French govt names Baroin as new finance minister
Francois Baroin had been seen as a natural successor to Christine Lagarde, named as new IMF chief.
Paris: President Nicolas Sarkozy appointed Francois Baroin, budget minister and government spokesman, as France`s new finance minister on Wednesday, replacing Christine Lagarde.
Baroin will be replaced in his duties by Valerie Pecresse, a minister of higher education.
Baroin, 46, has worked closely with the Finance Ministry and had been seen as a natural successor to Lagarde, named late on Tuesday as the new chief of the International Monetary Fund.