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Soirée Spéciale | French Elections

On Tuesday 19th of April, we had the pleasure to welcome our members in Nieuwspoort, The Hague to debate about the 2022 French Presidential Elections.

This event was the perfect opportunity to discuss, exchange and to question burning issues in the extraordinary current European context before the final election night that took place 2 days ago (April 24th).  

 

We had the opportunity to co-organize this debate with Hague Corporate Affairs, the pan-European public affairs consultancy and to have as our keynote speakers the best high-level Dutch and French experts in order to take a closer look into the two running candidate's programmes, namely those of Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen.  

 

Moderated by Kees van Rij, former ambassador of the Netherlands to Brazil, Turkey, Spain and Greece, our debate focused on three strategic sectors: defence, energy and agri-food. 

 

 

ALBUM PHOTO

 

 

First session : Defence

 

First session raised questions about the future of European Defence and the role of France with Evgeniy Levchenko, president of the Dutch Federation of Contract Football Players (VVCS0), Jean-Dominique Giuliani, Chairman of the Foundation Robert Schuman and Ed Kronenburg, Former ambassador of the Netherlands to France.   

 

Referring to the current European geopolitical context, our experts alluded to the War in Ukraine and propaganda used by the Russian government. Ukrainian football player Evgeniy Levchenko reminded us how the Soviet Union split up (1991) into several independent states such as Ukraine and how Russia always considered Ukraine as a fake and utopic kind of ‘young brother’.

 

Jean-Dominique Giuliani then reminded us of the role and powers of the French President: head of the military and nuclear power, he can dismiss his prime minister and is therefore very powerful.

 

He also underlined how different these presidential elections are from the ones held previously. Indeed, people traditionally reject the incumbent president in the end of his mandate but with the high score of Macron registered in the first round (28,3 %), it is clearly not the case with this 12th presidential election of the V Republic.

 

Ed Kronenburg also raised the clear differences regarding the geopolitical, political, environmental and economic contexts between 2017 and 2022 with pending security issues such as the war in Ukraine but also the risks of France leaving NATO if Marine Le Pen was to be elected.  

 

Indeed, our specialist talked about the major differences between the two running candidates; Macron being pro Europe (since the beginning of his mandate, he visited all European countries) and pro NATO contrary to Marine Le Pen who conversely, is opposed to and would rather prefer France to become independent.

 

Thus, it really came to light thanks to first session how decisive the Presidential elections are in the shaping of tomorrow's Europe and fate.   

 

 

Second session : energy and agri-food

 

The second session focused on the impact the outcome of the elections would have on French energy and agri-food markets. It was led with Régis Chancel, CEO of Sloecentrale BV and Casper Holl, Head of agro-economic policies at the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality.  

 

Our experts first made a link between the security issues raised by the war in Ukraine and food security, one of the main issues of this 2022 Presidential Elections.
Indeed, Régis Chancel stressed out the fact that agri-food as well as energy are both pillars of a strong and efficient economy. The war in Ukraine and the drastic rise of gas and electricity (the electricity’s price being determined by the gas’ price) are structural problems that the future president will have to face. As he added, the decisions that will be taken in that matter will impact the French society for decades and even centuries.

 

Casper Holl alluded to the two programmes of the running candidates, Macron being open to work with the European Union conversely to Le Pen having a nationalist vision.


For our specialists, both covid crisis and the war in Ukraine have proved that one needs to be self-sufficient and sovereign. Reason why the best candidate will be the one who will invest in new technologies & renewable energies in order to find alternatives to Russian gas.
Finally, the alternative of the hydrogen energy and France’s potential in that sector was evoked (France having the longest coast of all European Union).  

 


 

After the debate, our guests had the pleasure to participate to a networking cocktail and could taste the delicious appetizers made by Nieuwspoort. On the menu: soup, goat cheese and walnut tartine, mashed potatoes and duck breast and as a cherry on the cake, a melting chocolate cake! Thank you to Nieuwspoort for allowing us to spend such a lovely time! 

 

During the cocktail, our guests were also able to listen to Pierre et les Optimistes playing sweet songs with sunshine vibes and summer grooves! They were the perfect musicians to accompany us during this moment! 

 

We would like to warmly thank all participants for their attentive listening and relevant questions : we could not expect better audience for such a debate !   

 

Last but not least, we would like to greet and thank all the Hague Corporate Affairs' team, Sandrine Lauret and Marion Banide for co-organizing this event with us and for making it a true success ! 

 

We are very looking forward to spending another event with you.

 


 

Soirée Spéciale | French Elections - MyAlbum

 


 

Hague Corporate Affairs is a full-service corporate affairs, corporate communication and public affairs consultancy firm with offices in the Hague, Amsterdam, Brussels, and Paris. Get in touch with Sandrine Lauret, Director of Hague France.

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