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The treasures of the elysée
  • 52'
  • Author : Florent Chevolleau
  • 16-04-2007
  • Master : 1540

The treasures of the elysée | Lundi investigation | Canal+

It’s the holy of holies of French politics, one of the finest palaces in the republic, certainly one of the most famous. And yet the Elysee palace, the official residence of France’s presidents for more than 130 years, hides many secrets.The most intriguing, arguably, concerns its finances. Last year it cost the French taxpayer an estimated 32 million euros, the equivalent of 40 million dollars. Where does the money go, we asked…but the replies were scarce. When it comes to finances, Elysee officials are notoriously tight-lipped. Officially, the Presidency of France is not obliged to publish detailed accounts…so it doesn’t. Are 1000 people really employed, as some claim, by the Elysee? If so, what do they all do? Should the head of state’s accounts be made public as in most other European nations? We asked people who worked alongside former presidents from Charles de Gaulle to Jacques Chirac for their insights into how and where the money is spent, and life behind the scenes in the Elysee palace.