The High Authority for the Transparency of Public Life (HATVP) has rejected a retraining project for the former Minister Delegate for Transport Jean-Baptiste Djebbari at the shipowner CMA-CGM, pointing to “substantial ethical risks”, according to a notice published on Tuesday.

The former minister, who had already obtained the green light from the HATVP to sit on the board of directors of a start-up specializing in the construction of hydrogen vehicles, wanted this time to become executive vice-president in charge of the space hub that the CMA-CGM plans to create.

Mr. Djebbari would have been in this capacity a member of the executive committee of the shipping giant.

Contacted, the CMA-CGM did not wish to comment on the information.

Member of the government from September 2019 to May 2022, Mr. Djebbari’s project was deemed “incompatible” with his former functions due to “substantial ethical risks”, according to the High Authority.

Given the files that the former minister had to manage – intermodality, civil aviation, satellite applications, ports or maritime transport – the HATVP considers that this position at the CMA-CGM would cause a risk of “substantial” questioning of the “independent and impartial functioning of the administration”.

The HATVP also notes that Mr. Djebbari met eight times with the senior executives of the shipping company. What create “a legitimate doubt as to the conditions under which the minister exercised his governmental functions, with regard to the ethical principles and the obligation to prevent conflicts of interest which are imposed on him”, advances the HATVP.

It also gave the green light, but under very strict conditions, to the creation by the former minister of a consulting company.

The HATVP warns the former LREM deputy for Haute-Vienne against the criminal risk of “illegal taking of interests” in cases where his future consulting company has a transport sector company as a client.

For a period of three years, he must also refrain from any approach, including the representation of interests, with members of the government or the administrations in charge of transport.

Mr. Djebbari said he was “perfectly calm” on May 17 and assured that he had “no mood” to leave in the private sector after a stint in government which he had long announced that he did not want to continue.

05/24/2022 17:06:51 –         Paris (AFP) –         © 2022 AFP