France elected a new President in the second round of elections on Sunday, voting in Socialist Francois Hollande.
57-year old Hollande defeated Nicolas Sarkozy, obtaining about 52 percent of the votes according to early projections, versus 48 percent for incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy.
In his speech after the results just after 8pm Paris time. Mr Sarkozy admitted defeat, saying that he was “taking responsibility for defeat.
Sarkozy is one of a string of European leaders recently to fall during the euro zone debt crisis, and is the first French president who failed to be re-elected for a second term in thirty years.
Hollande now faces huge challenges, as he comes into office at a difficult time when the French economy has sluggish growth, a growing budget deficit debt, and the highest unemployment in over a decade.
Hollande’s victory could change how Europe tackles its debt crisis. In his campaign he said he wants more stimulus and less austerity and wants to renegotiate a European treaty on budget cuts that Germany’s Angela Merkel and Sarkozy had fought hard to achieve. This will raise concerns from markets that expect France to urgently trim its huge debts.