Paulette Lenert is a Luxembourgish lawyer and politician of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers’ Party. She currently holds the positions of Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Health, Minister Delegate of Social Security, and Minister of Consumer Protection.
AMCHAM: Please introduce yourself to our audience by telling the key points you would like our audience to know about your life history, your acquired skill set and competencies, and the values which prioritize and guide your decision-making.
MINISTER PAULETTE LENERT: In my professional career, I have served as both a lawyer and a judge with a focus on public and tax law. I have also held positions as a policy adviser within the public sector, focusing on human resources and developing lifelong learning programs.
Throughout my journey, I have been passionate about streamlining procedures and lessening the administrative burden, striving for efficiency in public service. My core values revolve around respect, accountability, and informed decision-making. I take great pride in being a goal-oriented problem solver that makes sure every voice is heard. These values guide me in every aspect of my professional life, shaping my commitment to delivering impactful solutions and encouraging constructive and equitable change.
Please write a SWOT analysis of the current political and economic situation impacting Luxembourg.
Primarily driven by a thriving financial sector, Luxembourg boasts a strong and stable economy, which contributes significantly to its prosperity. As a country, we have been able to attract talented people and we have enjoyed a stable political environment with a history of effective governance. Luxembourg has consistently fostered social dialogue and cohesion, establishing a harmonious environment where stakeholders collaborate effectively to address societal challenges.
Rapid population growth over the last two decades has put pressure on infrastructure, including housing, healthcare and transportation – a trend that will continue over the coming years and requires strategic planning and foresight. The influx of residents has led to a shortage of affordable housing, posing challenges for both residents and newcomers. Despite general prosperity, there is a growing risk of poverty and a working-poor population, a negative trend that has been accelerated by the different crises over the last few years. The widening social inequality threatens to undermine social cohesion and political stability.
Luxembourg has consistently managed to overcome challenges by leveraging its strengths, which include a robust tradition of social dialogue, effectively collaborate with its international partners, and a willingness to embrace innovative solutions, enabling it to adapt adeptly to a myriad of challenges.
What are the three most priority actions you will immediately initiate if you become Prime Minister and why you have chosen these three?
If I were to become Prime Minister, my three priorities would revolve around addressing critical issues affecting the well-being of our country: housing, administrative burden, societal and technological innovation.
I would launch an ambitious housing reform plan aimed at increasing the availability of affordable housing, as this has become a major strain on our population and on our ability to attract international talent. I believe that the State needs to invest actively into existing properties and new constructions in order to improve and increase the offer of affordable housing, both short- and long-term.
It is crucial that we streamline bureaucratic processes in order for our country to function as efficiently as possible. This will allow us to foster a more dynamic and competitive economy and will eventually lead to an improved overall prosperity.
Innovation is the key to the long-term success of our country. Therefore, we need to continue to invest into education, research and development, and create a supportive and nurturing environment that cherishes intellectual curiosity and collaboration. Luxembourg is a forward-thinking nation that needs to foster a culture of scientific exploration and innovation.
As Prime Minister, and during your first 6 months in office, please identify priority changes you will initiate to improve the circumstances and enhance the quality of life of the inhabitants of Luxembourg and increase the attractiveness of Luxembourg as an international business location in Europe.
One of my first priorities will be for Luxembourg to join the Wellbeing Economy Alliance, a network that promotes holistic well-being as a key policy goal. In this regard, it will be important to develop well-being indicators to measure progress on top of more traditional economic metrics.
I would also develop a comprehensive preventive healthcare strategy to proactively address health issues and promote a healthier lifestyle. Investing into prevention will allow us to reduce the burden of preventable diseases on our healthcare system significantly as we will have a healthier population.
Additionally, I would address the increasing income inequalities by implementing a tax reform that reduces the tax burden on lower and medium-income individuals, leading to a more equitable wealth distribution and making sure that we leave nobody behind, especially in a time of economic hardship.
Furthermore, it will be essential to invest significant resources in order to address the housing crisis by improving the availability of affordable housing. Simultaneously, we need to increase the offer of public international schools further making sure that every resident can receive the high-quality education he or she deserves. Luxembourg is an open and multicultural country that fosters diversity, social cohesions and inclusivity – attributes that we need to protect, as they are vital to our country’s strength and stability.
In order to support business innovation, we need to encourage businesses to become leaders in the digital and green revolution by offering incentives that lead to positive change and development. As part of our commitment to sustainable finance, I would continue to develop the Luxembourg Green Exchange and promote sustainable financial instruments.