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A head of state committed to protecting the environment, Prince Albert II is also a builder and a moderniser.

The son of Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace, Prince Albert Alexandre Louis Pierre was born on 14 March 1958. After attending school at Monaco’s Lycée Albert I, he studied at Amherst College in Massachusetts, USA, where he obtained a degree in Political Sciences.

As Hereditary Prince, from 1984 he supported His father in conducting the affairs of the State and represented the Principality at important international events, such as the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio. On 5 October 2004, he led a delegation from Monaco to Strasbourg for the official ceremony to mark the Principality becoming the 46th member state of the Council of Europe, a decisive moment for the country’s sovereignty.

Prince Albert II became Sovereign Prince of Monaco following the death of His father in 2005. For His accession on 12 July 2005, he gave a speech on the Place du Palais setting out the priorities for His reign, with a particular focus on making Monaco “a model society, a society model”.

In July 2011, Albert II married Charlene Wittstock, who then became Princess Charlene. It was the Archbishop of Monaco, Mgr Barsi, who conducted the religious ceremony in the Royal Courtyard at the Palace, witnessed by numerous heads of state, including the President of the French Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy. The couple’s children, Hereditary Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, were born on 10 December 2014.

© Palais Princier
© DR

Among H.S.H. Prince Albert II’s commitments, protecting the environment has always occupied a special place. Thus, in April 2006, less than a year after His accession to the throne, the Monegasque head of state led an expedition to the North Pole from the Russian base of Barneo. In addition to paying tribute to the Arctic exploration campaigns of His great-great-grandfather, Prince Albert I, the aim of the expedition was to raise global awareness of the challenges facing the planet in terms of climate change and pollution, particularly in the highly endangered polar regions.

On His return, he created the Prince Albert II Foundation, dedicated to combatting climate change, safeguarding biodiversity and conserving the planet’s water resources.

Active primarily in the polar regions, the Mediterranean and the least developed countries (LDCs), the Foundation has since led or supported nearly 500 projects across the world, in partnership with local stakeholders, scientific laboratories and political institutions.

In January 2009, Prince Albert II led a three-week expedition to Antarctica to meet the scientific community, becoming the first head of state to visit both poles. He has also been actively involved in all UN negotiations on climate, biodiversity and ocean conservation, and specifically the Paris Agreement which Monaco signed, under His authority, in 2016.

© Direction de la Communication
© Direction de la Communication

Under the reign of Prince Albert II, the Principality has made a firm commitment to ensuring fiscal transparency, signing 35 bilateral agreements and being removed from all grey lists. The Principality is also a party to the OECD Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, which aims to increase the sharing of tax information between countries, on request and automatically, in order to better tackle tax fraud.

Domestically, Prince Albert II’s reign has been characterised by a policy of modernisation and major construction work, demonstrated notably by a major offshore extension project, the launch of work on a new hospital (Princess Grace Hospital), the completion of community facilities (hotel and catering school, new lower secondary school) and an extensive national housing plan.

In 2019, the launch of the Extended Monaco programme was the result of Prince Albert II’s determination to make Monaco a significant player in the digital transition.

The challenge that we face together is to ensure compatibility between things which are not compatible: building in the sea while safeguarding the environment.”

Albert II, during the inauguration of the first caisson for the offshore extension project.

© Direction de la Communication - Michael Alesi
© Palais Princier

Prince Albert II, who competed at five Olympic games as a member of the Monegasque bobsleigh team, is also active on the international sports scene.

He is President of the Monegasque Olympic Committee and has been a member of the International Olympic Committee since 1985.

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