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Francois Hollande, French Socialist leader, visits sixth biggest French city: London

French Socialist leader, Francois Hollande, was in London to woo French voters and to speak on financial regulation.

Francois Hollande LondonEnlarge
Britain's Labour party leader Ed Miliband walks with French presidential candidate Francois Hollande in front of the British Parliament. (Lefteris Pitarakis/Getty Images)

French presidential frontrunner, Francois Hollande, visited London Wednesday on his first foreign trip as leader of the Socialist party.

Hollande, who dined with Labour leader Ed Milliband and spoke at King's College, was in London to woo French voters in the British capital who, according to the Guardian, may number up to 300,000, making it the sixth largest French city.

The French leader was also in the world's finance capital to push for more regulation of the financial sector, a message reiterated throughout his bid for the French presidency, which will be decided on an April 22 ballot - with a possible May 6 runoff.

According to AFP, in a speech at King's College, Hollande said: "We need a market that is better regulated. Of course we need banks and financial products to keep the economy running, but we don't need banks that speculate. He added: "We need to bring in rules against excess."

Hollande has said recently that he would renegotiate the EU fiscal treaty to include more regulation provisions, while urging the British government to take more responsibility in the European Union.

He also said recently that he would impose a 75 per cent tax on those earning over 1 million euros - a statement that was slammed by critics.

Read more on GlobaPost: French presidential candidate Francois Hollande vows 75% tax rate

According to the Telegraph, after stepping off the Eurostar train from Paris Wednesday, Mr Hollande was asked by reporters whether he had a message for Londoners. “We must have more regulation,”he is quoted as saying in English. "I am not dangerous," he added in reference to charges that he was an enemy of finance.

Notably, the Socialist leader did not meet with British Prime Minister, David Cameron.

When asked why the two did not meet, Hollande is quoted by AFP as saying: "The day might come, and it might be soon, if I manage to convince the French voters on May 6, when I will have to meet Mr Cameron."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/france/120229/french-socialist-leader-visits-sixth-biggest-french-city-