France's Macron asks Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne to propose new government

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© Johanna Geron, Reuters

French President Emmanuel Macron has asked Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne to propose a new "government of action" that will be named in early July, according to an interview with AFP.

Macron said he had instructed Borne to conduct new consultations with parliamentary groups to form a "government of action" for early July.

"I decided today to confirm my confidence in Elisabeth Borne," Macron said.

Macron, who spoke to Borne on Saturday, announced that he had instructed her next week to sound out the political groups in the National Assembly on a number of issues.

They included their possible participation in a government, their position on a vote of confidence in Borne herself on July 5, and also on the vote on the state budget next autumn.

"On my return from the G7 and NATO, the prime minister will submit to me proposals for a roadmap for the government of France over the coming months and years, and also for the composition of a new government of action at the service of France that we will put in place in the first days of July," he added.

"I have confidence in our collective ability to get there. I have confidence in the ability of the Prime Minister...," he said.

France is facing a prolonged political deadlock after opposition parties gave a frosty reception to Macron's call for "compromises" to keep France governable after an indecisive parliamentary election.

Macron made his plea in an address to the nation late Wednesday days after failing to retain his bloc's overall majority in parliament, a setback that threatens to cripple his ability to carry out his planned reforms.

His centrist alliance finished Sunday's parliamentary elections 44 seats short of an overall majority in the National Assembly, as a new left-wing coalition and the far right made major gains.

The situation undermines Macron's plans for reform in his second term after his April presidential re-election -- including a key measure to raise the retirement age -- and risks denting his international stature.