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Merkel: British EU immigration cap would have price

18 Mai 2017

Still, the two leaders are already signaling an understanding on the need to accommodate each other.

His appointment was seen as a strategic move by 39-year-old Macron, who is trying to woo modernisers of all stripes to his new centrist party, the Republique en Marche (Republic on the Move, REM).

European countries already cooperate in some foreign operations and through North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

"On the other hand, Macron's style suits the chancellor".

"Germany's interests are closely linked to France's interests..."

Macron will push a firm European Union line with Britain in its negotiations to leave the bloc, in part to deter other members from trying to leave. In practice, any revision of the treaties implies unanimous adoption by all European Union member states.

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.

The two leaders have evoked several other zones of cooperation, starting with defense, but also digital technology, fiscal issues, global politics and education.

One of Macron's most controversial ideas is a shared budget for the countries that use the euro currency.

Socialist party chief Jean-Christophe Cambadelis said that Macron's government "of the right and for the right" would "imperil protections for workers, drastically reduce the number of civil servants and smash public services".

"You are the new faces of French politics", some of those present quoted him as saying.

The French President also called for a "less bureaucratic" European Union that "better protects" its citizens, and he categorically ruled out the so-called "eurobonds " n a proposal launched during the Eurozone crisis that would consist of combining debts among countries sharing the common currency, something to which Berlin is vehemently opposed.

Ms. Merkel and her government have always been skeptical of proposals to pool more resources, believing that sharing eurozone money could let countries off the hook when it comes to balancing their budgets and making necessary reforms.

Macron said he does not favor European countries taking joint responsibility for old debts and that he has never pushed for jointly issued eurobonds.

And he asked Macron also to "contribute to the cooperation and solidarity among nations", and to continue to promote "in Europe and in the world the search for peace and common good, the respect of life and the defense of dignity of each person".

In addition, the rate of unemployment is estimated at close to 4 percent in Germany, less than half of the rate in France (9.9 percent).

In the weeks since, however, some analysts and media have focused on how Macron's plans could be costly for Germany, with Der Spiegel running the headline "Our dear friend" - using the term "dear" to mean expensive. "Firstly, the current European political topics and about the directives the European asylum system, and also, questions of trade relations".

Merkel has many times before pressed Macron's predecessors Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy for the changes needed to lift France's underperforming economy out of the doldrums.

Merkel: British EU immigration cap would have price