France's new cabinet to face vote of confidence

PM Valls and his new cabinet face parliamentary vote as opinion polls reveal a lack of confidence from French public

PM Valls and his new cabinet face parliamentary vote as opinion polls reveal a lack of confidence from French public

PARIS - The new French cabinet led by Prime Minister Manuel Valls will face a parliamentary vote of confidence on Tuesday in the country's National Assembly.

Valls will address the French National Assembly – parliament's lower chamber – on Tuesday to present his government's policy.

The 16 new cabinet members held their first meeting, chaired by President Francois Hollande, last Friday.

"On Tuesday afternoon, the Prime Minister will present a general policy speech and there will be a vote of confidence," said government spokesman Stephane Le Foll after the meeting.

Spanish-born Valls was appointed prime minister on Monday March 31, in a government reshuffle following the ruling Socialists' poor performance in local elections on March 30.

Valls and his new cabinet are likely to win the vote of confidence because of the Socialists' parliamentary majority.

 An opinion poll released one day after Valls, the country's former Interior Minister, unveiled his new cabinet revealed that less than half of respondents had confidence in him or his ministers.

With Eurostat recording French unemployment at 10.4 percent, just below the European Union average, and growth drifting at close to zero for the past two years, boosting economic growth, lowering taxes and cutting back on public spending will be one of the main challenges for Valls and his new cabinet.

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