Prince Albert faces developers in battle for Monaco’s future

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But warm words cannot hide a power struggle between Prince and the proponents of development. It is the one who could nevertheless define the future of the principality and of the Maison Grimaldi, which Prince Albert heads.

The development of Anse du Portier is financed by a group of private investors led by Patrice Pastor, member of a dynasty which amassed a fortune estimated at 30 billion euros and is nicknamed “the other princely family of Monaco. “.

Albert, whose mother was Hollywood actress Grace Kelly, inherited the throne upon the death of his father Prince Rainier in 2005 with big plans to root out the corruption that has long characterized the world’s second smallest country.

“Money and virtue must be combined all the time,” he said in his accession speech. “The importance of the Monegasque financial center will require extreme vigilance to avoid the development of types of financial activities that are not welcome in our country.

The success of his crusade remains a subject of debate. Nonetheless, the Prince observed early in his reign that the era of overseas countries turning a blind eye to Monaco’s role in international tax evasion would not last forever.

The EU, the economic leviathan at Monaco’s gates, has passed a series of international tax treaties with Switzerland, Liechtenstein, San Marino and Andorra in recent years. And the 2016 Panama Papers survey heralded a change in mentality among political leaders around the world.

In recent months, the prince has sought to reshuffle his government with key political appointments that will strengthen plans for greater transparency, the fight against corruption and an emphasis on environmental benchmarks.

His plans, however, were beset by an online smear campaign.

Reports have surfaced that Prince Albert’s marriage to Princess Charlene, a former Olympic swimmer 20 years her junior, was difficult as she struggled to recover from a long illness in her native South Africa.


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