Visit by Mr. Courtial, Minister of State for French Nationals Abroad
The Minister of State responsible for French Nationals Abroad, Mr. Edouard Courtial, visited Washington on Monday, November 14, 2011. This visit is part of a week-long tour of the United States which will then take him to Boston, New York, New Orleans and Houston.
After meeting with the French business community in Washington at a breakfast at the French Ambassador’s Residence, Mr. Courtial visited the lycée français Rochambeau in Bethesda, close to Washington, D.C.
The Minister of State responsible for French Nationals Abroad then visited the General Consulate of France in Washington before meeting with the members of the French community at a meeting at the Embassy’s “Maison Française.”
Mr. Courtial’s visit to Washington concluded with the inauguration of a bakery owned by the French group, Paul, in Georgetown.
During his visit to the American capital, Mr. Edouard Courtial highlighted the efforts made by the French authorities to take greater account of the 2 million-odd French nationals living abroad. These efforts will notably result in the election in 2012, for the first time, of deputies for French nationals abroad.
Measures to facilitate voting procedures for French nationals registered at the Consulates during the next presidential and parliamentary elections will also be implemented by the administration. In this respect, Mr. Courtial wanted to congratulate the consular staff in America on their commitment and effectiveness.
Citing the example of the lycée Rochambeau, Mr. Courtial also highlighted the excellent network of French schools abroad. Lastly, the Minister of State commended the vibrancy of the French community in the United States, notably in Washington, which plays a vital role in enhancing France’s international profile.