Telecoms engineer and politician to run French regulator

Telecoms engineer and politician to run French regulator

Laure de la Raudière.jpg

The French Senate and the National Assembly have separately approved the nomination of Laure de la Raudière to head the country’s telecoms regulator.

President Emmanuel Macron had already  proposed de la Raudière earlier this month for the post of president of the Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications, Posts and Press Distribution (Arcep, Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques et des Postes).

Following the vote in the two parliamentary houses, all that is needed is a decree from Macron for her appointment to go ahead. 

As a representative of Eure-et-Loir in the National Assembly, where she is a member of the right-wing Agir party, she will be the first elected politician to head Arcep — but she is also a telecoms engineer, having a degree from the Télécom Paris, one of France’s grandes écoles — top universities.

After graduating, she worked for Orange — when it was still France Télécom — for 11 years, including a spell running its operations in the region she went on to represent in the French parliament

Senate president Sophie Primas said: “We are delighted with the appointment of a personality who is both an expert in the sector and with experience as a local elected representative.”

She will take over from Sébastien Soriano, who now runs IGN, the French mapping agency, after five years at the head of Arcep.

De la Raudière, who will quit her parliamentary seat when she moves to Arcep, said: “This is the first time that an elected official is appointed to the presidency of an authority and this is the first time that a woman has assumed the presidency of Arcep.”

The Senate listed her priorities at Arcep, including the deployment of fibre, 4G and 5G throughout France, and quality of service, “in particular in the context of the shutdown of the copper network and a new definition of universal service, which must not lead to any degradation of service in the field”.




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