“We want Europe to be sovereign. In geopolitical issues, in industrial and technological issues, we want Europe to be more independent. This has been the essence of French policy for more than six years,” said Bruno Le Maire, according to the agency Reuters, on the occasion of the meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
Bruno Le Maire stated that President Emmanuel Macron spoke with his US counterpart, Joseph Biden, before the state visit to China, emphasizing that Paris, Washington and the European Union have a “coordinated approach” in the relationship with Beijing.
“We want to have interactions with the Chinese Administration, as we believe that this is the best way to obtain certain concrete results”, Bruno Le Maire argued, stressing that France and the European Union remain “strong and reliable allies of the United States of America “.
“We ask China to reduce” military activities near Taiwan, insisted Bruno Le Maire.
Former American President Donald Trump, a candidate in the 2024 election race, criticized the attitude of the French President on Tuesday. “It’s a crazy world, and the United States has nothing to say,” Donald Trump said in an interview with Fox News, accusing President Macron of trying to curry favor with China.
Emmanuel Macron reiterated, on Wednesday, the position regarding the strategic autonomy of the European Union, arguing that, in the relationship with the United States, the partnership “does not mean being a vassal”, amid the controversy generated by statements regarding the status of Taiwan.
“Being an ally does not mean being a vassal, it does not mean that we do not have the right to think for ourselves. France is favorable to maintaining the current status of Taiwan, supports the “one China” policy and tries to resolve the crisis” between Beijing and Taipei peacefully , said Emmanuel Macron, according to the daily newspaper Le Figaro, in a press conference organized in the Dutch city of Amsterdam.
The President of France had previously declared, during a state visit to China, that the European Union should not strictly follow Washington’s or Beijing’s policies on the issue of Taiwan. “The worst thing would be for us, the Europeans, to become imitators, to adapt to the American rhythm or to the exaggerated reactions of China,” Macron said in an interview given to the publications Les Échos and Politico. Emmanuel Macron pleaded for the strengthening of the “strategic autonomy” of the European Union, demanding the “intensification of the European defense industry” and the “acceleration of the fight in the fields of nuclear and renewable energy”.
“The President of the Republic fully accepts his statements,” said an official from Paris on Wednesday, under the protection of anonymity.
During the visit to the Netherlands, the French president reaffirmed the idea of strengthening the sovereignty of the European Union. “We must configure our direction by choosing our interlocutors. We must try to be decisive rather than having rules imposed on us.” During the pandemic, “we understood that we were dependent on a large number of medicines and many other things. We must reduce this dependence, in order to strengthen our identity and sovereignty”, said Emmanuel Macron in his speech on Tuesday at the Nexus Institute in The Hague . Macron called for actions to protect the interests of the European Union in the relationship with the United States, against the background of the disputes generated by the ecological subsidies applied by Washington. “We have the right to show protectionism in certain critical sectors. We must protect our interests. If we believe that our strategic interests are at risk of being compromised, we must take action,” Macron insisted.
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