Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres has been named minister of culture and communication for France, in the new conservative government headed by Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin.

Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres has been named minister of culture and communication for France, in the new conservative government headed by Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin.

Donnedieu de Vabres replaces Jean-Jacques Aillagon, who held the post for two years.

The minister of culture's responsibilities include all issues related to media and the arts.

Among Donnedieu de Vabres' first duties will be to incorporate the European Union's Copyright and Enforcement directives into French law. He will also work on the benefits system for "casual" workers, including thousands in the music industry. Aillagon had been criticized for mishandling benefits issues.

Donnedieu de Vabres, 50, is a member of the French parliament and has previously held other cabinet positions.