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Macron and Sanchez signal a treaty to seal the Franco-Spanish friendship

LFrench President Emmanuel Macron and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez will have fun the “friendship” between their two nations on Thursday at a summit in Barcelona, ​​the place Paris hopes to rally Madrid to a muscular European response to renewed American protectionism.

Likelihood of the calendar, the French head of state will likely be all day in Spain on the very second when, in France, the possibly large demonstrations and strikes start towards his pension reform.

Discreet in current days on the most important reform of his second time period, he might need to touch upon this social mobilization from Barcelona throughout his joint press convention with the pinnacle of the Spanish authorities, or throughout a speech deliberate earlier than the French neighborhood.

After a tete-a-tete on the Nationwide Artwork Museum of Catalonia, the 2 leaders, accompanied by quite a few ministers, will signal with nice pomp a “treaty of friendship and cooperation”.

A textual content which offers, intimately, for a strengthening of the bilateral relationship on migration, protection, vitality and youth points.

“Extremely symbolic” treaty

This treaty is barely the third of its form signed in Europe by France after that of the Elysée, initialed in 1963 with Germany and supplemented since by that of Aix-la-Chapelle in 2019, and that of the Quirinal, signed with Italy in 2021.

Paris desires to engrave in stone the strengthening of its relations with neighbors apart from Germany, notably in southern Europe, at a time when the Franco-German engine of the EU has usually appeared out of breath.

“Extremely symbolic” for the French presidency, “this treaty solely comes to border or construction a relationship which is already dense in all areas”, it’s underlined on the Elysée the place “we notice a sure variety of convergences on elementary subjects for the European agenda for the approaching months”.

Madrid sees it, for its half, because the elevation to the very best degree of already wonderful relations between two nations whose leaders have already displayed frequent positions on many topics lately.

“Widespread line” on the Biden plan

However Emmanuel Macron has above all in thoughts to concretize in Barcelona a “frequent line with Madrid” on the European response to the Inflation Discount Act, the huge funding plan of American President Joe Biden within the vitality transition.

The French president, who had denounced on the finish of November in Washington “tremendous aggressive” American subsidies, desires an equally large motion from the EU and fast selections to stop the flight of European firms attracted by American help.

A agency tone in the direction of the USA that the Spanish Prime Minister didn’t undertake.

From Davos, Pedro Sanchez contented himself on Monday, on the American channel CNBC, with noting that the EU needed to “do its homework” and reform its personal coverage on state help to be able to ship firms “the message that Europe and naturally Spain is an effective place” to take a position.

Emmanuel Macron additionally cherishes the hope of rallying, to a sure extent, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to his place.

The latter will likely be obtained in Paris on Sunday to, exactly, have fun the sixtieth anniversary of the Elysée Treaty and take part in a Franco-German council of ministers imagined to settle the variations between the primary two European powers.

The signing of the Franco-Spanish treaty comes three months after the lifting of one of many principal disagreements between the 2 nations which determined, with Portugal, to bury the “Midcat” gasoline pipeline challenge, which Paris opposed, for the exchange it with a “inexperienced” hydrogen pipeline linking Barcelona to Marseille and known as “H2Med”.

Barcelona was exactly chosen because the host metropolis of the summit to underline the significance of this strategic challenge.

The selection of the Mediterranean metropolis additionally aimed to indicate that the scenario has calmed down in Catalonia, the scene of an try at secession in 2017. However the Catalan separatists don’t see it that means and can display to protest towards the holding of this summit.

A uncommon stumbling block between the 2 nations, Madrid will insist on Thursday on the significance of reopening eight small border posts as rapidly as potential, that are nonetheless closed within the title of the French authorities’ battle towards terrorism and unlawful immigration.

01/19/2023 04:14:16 – Barcelona (AFP) – © 2023 AFP

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