France's Macron signals modest approach with 450 euro inauguration suit

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French republican guards arrive at the Elysee Palace prior to the handover ceremony for New French President Emmanuel Macron, in Paris, France, Sunday.

As he leaves the French presidency, Francois Hollande is describing the "terrible ordeals" that marked his five-year term, from deadly attacks in France to Greece's debt crisis.

Mr Macron announced his determination to push ahead with reforms to free up France's economy and pledged to press for a "more efficient, more democratic" EU.

Macron is the first president of modern France to be elected as an independent. Macron then accompanied his political patron, for whom he once worked as economy minister, down the red carpet to a waiting vehicle in which the Socialist leader departed to applause from VIP guests and his former household staff.

Macron promised to tackle political, economic and social problems while restoring France's global standing.

The inauguration ceremony took place in the Elysee Palace in Paris on Sunday.

Mr Macron officially became President when Laurent Fabius, chairman of the constitutional council and a former prime minister, read out the results of the election.

Following the ceremony, Mr Macron accompanied Mr Hollande as he walked to his vehicle in the palace forecourt and drove away as the new president waved him off.

The new French president in his inaugural speech said he understood the responsibility entrusted to him by the French people.

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The whole world will pay attention to what France says because we will, together, go beyond our fears and anxieties.

Macron, a 39-year-old centrist, took the reins of power from Francois Hollande a week after he won a resounding victory over far-right leader Marine Le Pen in a tumultuous election.

At 39, he becomes the youngest president in France's history, and the youngest leader since Napoleon.

He displayed youthful vigour during the televised proceedings, at one point racing up the Elysee stairs to meet a protocol requirement - something not all previous French presidents might have managed.

In coming parliamentary elections in June he must try to win a majority for his start-up Republic on the Move (REM) party that has blown apart traditional French political boundaries.

REUTERS/Christian Hartmann Former French President Francois Hollande waves from his vehicle as President Emmanuel Macron (Rear) watches after the handover ceremony at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, May 14, 2017.

His first visit overseas will be to Germany on Monday, to visit with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin and then in the following days will have to name his prime minister and form a government.

The wives of French presidents have not typically taken on first lady duties as many do in countries such as the United States.

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