In what is sure to raise eyebrows and cause some headdesk moments across the world, the French Industry Minister, a member of the ruling Socialist Party, has said that what he’s doing is what Obama is doing:
The French politician who said Indian steel company ArcelorMittal should leave the country has told CNBC that his government is only acting like U.S. President Barack Obama.
Eric Feferberg / AFP/Getty ImagesFrench Minister for Industrial Recovery, Arnaud Montebourg poses as he arrives at the Hotel Matignon (the Prime Minister’s official residence) in Paris.
Industry Minister Arnaud Montebourg, a member of the governing Socialist party, caused controversy last week when he said that the Indian company, which employs close to 20,000 people in France, should leave after it said it would have to close down a factory.
The French government announced on Thursday that it could nationalize the factory in question, with backing from an unnamed businessman.
The news raised the specter of the nationalizations of the early 1980s, which were instigated by Hollande’s predecessor Francois Mitterrand.
Montebourg told CNBC after a meeting with trade unions in Paris: “Barack Obama’s nationalized. The Germans are nationalizing. All countries are nationalizing. I’ve also noticed the British nationalized 6 banks.”