Thursday, July 18, 2024
HomeWorld newsMacron's charms are faltering in Le Pen's industrial heart

Macron’s charms are faltering in Le Pen’s industrial heart

The flat lowlands around Dunkirk are changing. Motorists driving along the A16 highway that connects Paris to France’s northernmost coastline may see towering cranes and huge, newly erected gray walls on the outskirts of the port city.

The €1.5 billion ($1.6 billion) flagship giant being built by French startup Verkor is part of President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to transform an area devastated by industrial decline into Europe’s biggest hub for batteries for electric vehicles. Low-carbon businesses are expected to create 20,000 local jobs over the next decade.

Macron calls the hub an example of ‘something that works’. Yet his efforts to promote his green reindustrialization drive are failing to win over voters ahead of this week’s European Parliament elections in a region that has become a stronghold for France’s far-right National Rally party Marine Le Pen.

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