Merkel: British EU immigration cap would have price

Claudine Rigal
Mai 19, 2017

"We agreed that we want to develop a road map for the European Union's medium-term perspectives", Ms Merkel said with Mr Macron by her side. Merkel and Macron want to kick-start ties with an alliance some German media have dubbed "Merkron".

Last week, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel of Germany's center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) - a junior partner in Merkel's coalition - accused Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) of trying to "torpedo" Macron's EU reform plans for political reasons ahead of Germany's election in September.

"We will tax large inheritances more strongly", said the draft manifesto of the SPD, which is junior partner in Chancellor Angela Merkel's governing coalition and whose leader Martin Schulz will run against her in the September 24 election.

On Tuesday, he and Philippe had been expected to finalize and announce a government which Macron says will bridge France's entrenched left-right divide and breathe new life into the country's jaded political landscape.

Any reforms would likely still have to be held off until after September, when Merkel faces reelection.

In strategic terms, France will also be the only EU member on the UN Security Council and the bloc's only country with nuclear weapons after the United Kingdom leaves the union in 2019.

He is a member of the Republicans, a mainstream-right party whose candidate Macron beat in the first round of the election.

"Instead of promoting electric mobility, the chancellor has been holding a protective hand over the diesel [industry] for years", Kritscher said.

Taking over from outgoing prime minister Bernard Cazeneuve during a short ceremony, Philippe described himself as "a man of the right" who was driven by "the greater good".

Forces of division have been closing in on Le Pen since her electoral loss to centrist Emmanuel Macron, but she dismissed the notion that there were links between her loss and a series of events widely seen as potentially weakening her party.

Merkel's approach underlined her view that it was crucial not only for France, but for Germany, to help Macron succeed - a point that she has repeatedly stressed.

Merkel made clear that she was prepared to be open to fundamental reforms and treaty changes.

The meeting's warm tone reflected rising hopes in Germany that Mr. Macron may be able to deliver what officials in Berlin have long demanded: a convincing overhaul of France's tightly regulated economy that would jump-start growth in the eurozone's second-largest economy.

But he added: "what I know is that we have investments to make (in Europe), and so we have to work on investment mechanisms for the future". But he needs a win for his fledgling party in legislative elections to implement his policies.

A day after Mr Macron's inauguration, the two leaders struck a congenial tone in Berlin after talks in which they sought to reinvigorate the Franco-German relationship and the European project that has been shaken by Britain's planned exit.

Macron has said half his ministers will be women and that some will be high achievers in business, academia, the civil service or the NGO world.

"Of course, this magic only remains if there are results", she added.

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