Trichet served as Head of France’s Treasury, Deputy Governor of the IMF and World Bank, and Governor of the Banque de France before succeeding the late Wim Duisenberg as ECB President. Trichet recognises that politicians made mistakes in the first decade of the single currency, not least in the policy of benign neglect towards Greece. He has also argued that the Eurozone economy as a whole was not in as poor a state as the US and Britain.
Jean-Claude Trichet is former President of the European Central Bank, a position he held until 2011. Once ranked by Newsweek as fifth most powerful person in the world, he has previously been the Governor of the Banque de France and a Member of the Governing Council of the ECB. He is Alternate Governor for the International Monetary Fund and Member of the Board of the Bank for International Settlements.
Born in Lyons, he is an Ingénieur Civil des Mines, a graduate of the Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris and holds a Master's in economics. After working briefly in the private sector he attended the École Nationale d'Administration and was appointed Inspecteur des Finances. He was then assigned to various posts at the Ministry of Finance, in the General Inspectorate of Finance and later in the Treasury Department, where he became the Secretary General of the Interministerial Committee for Improving Industrial Structures.
Trichet was made an adviser to the cabinet of the Minister for Economic Affairs, and then an adviser to the President, Valery-Giscard d'Estaing in the same year. In this capacity, he worked on issues relating to energy, industry, research and microeconomics. He subsequently became Deputy Head of Bilateral Affairs at the Treasury Department, Head of International Affairs at the Treasury, and was Chairman of the Paris Club, the informal group of financial officials from nineteen of the world's biggest economies, which provides financial services to debtor nations.
Later he directed the private office of the Minister for Economic Affairs before becoming Head of the Treasury. In the same year, he was appointed to be the Censor of the General Council of the Banque de France and deputy governor of the IMF and the World Bank. He was then Chairman of the European Monetary Committee until his appointment as the Governor of the Banque de France. He has been the chairman of the Monetary Policy Council of the Banque de France, member of the board of the European Monetary Institute and member of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank.
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