Germany, France Plan Roadmap to Develop EU

Elias Hubbard
May 21, 2017

"The French elections.have shown the Germans once more what a treasure Europe is and how important German-French cooperation and friendship is for this treasure", Ms. Merkel said in a joint news conference with Mr. Macron at the Chancellery in Berlin.

His choice of prime minister will be crucial for the first task, with the 46-year-old centre-right Edouard Philippe from the Republicans party seen as the favourite for the job.

Mrs Merkel, 62, was cautious on Mr Macron's call...

Emmanuel Macron's support for the Paris bid is seen as symbolically important, and his decision to meet Tuesday with the visiting International Olympic Committee delegation was one of his first moves since taking office Sunday. "Now they'll need hygiene certificates - things we don't even remember".

Monday's talks between new French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel sought to reinvigorate a Europe shaken by Britain's planned exit, and spread hope that the populist upsurge epitomized by Macron's rival in the French election, Marine Le Pen, could be held at bay.

Both Merkel and Macron were open to eurozone reforms if necessary.

Macron said "treaty change long used to be a French taboo", but that this would change now that he was president.

"If the prime minister comes from the right, Emmanuel Macron will be able to attack the parliamentary elections by dynamiting the right, in the same way he has done to the left", political expert Philippe Moreau-Chevrolet told AFP.

Underlining the concerns over Macron's proposals, Germany's biggest selling daily Bild warned ahead of the French leader's meeting with Merkel that before seeking deeper European Union integration, "France must once again be at the same level as Germany politically and economically". She said she was personally prepared to make the case for such a change. "Macron!" and waving European flags.

It has led some to suggest that Macron sees Germany as a cash cow which will be forced into bankrolling other states - something which Jean Pisani-Ferry, economic programme coordinator for Marcon' campaign, denies.

"I am not a promoter of the mutualisation of old debt" within the euro zone, he said after meeting Dr Merkel, adding, however, that the joint financing of future projects should be considered.

He also tried to show solidarity with Germany on the migrant crisis - an issue on which Merkel has pressed for European Union countries to work together - by saying that a common asylum policy was one area where Paris could cooperate with Berlin.

"There is an agreement within the government that, given the hard situations we in Europe are being confronted with, a plan with treaty changes is not a good idea", Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer also said. By appointing him, Macron has passed over loyal followers such as Richard Ferrand, a former Socialist who was one of the first to join Mr Macron's cause a year ago and is secretary general of REM.

The new Cabinet posed briefly for photographs on the front porch of the presidential Elysee Palace in Paris. She is scheduled to give a television interview on Thursday night and an announcement is expected by week's end. That requires convergence rules, real structural reforms.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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