, Dec 9 () –
French President Emmanuel Macron announced this Thursday the objectives of France in the framework of the presidency of the Council of the European Union that he will hold from January, among which is a reform of the Schengen area, with climate change and the economic recovery at the center of the proposals.
France will contribute, at the head of the European Council, to a “more sovereign Europe” through the “protection” of the borders “, for which it will lead a” reform of the texts to improve the internal functioning “of the Schengen area. of the creation of “an emergency support mechanism at the borders in case of crisis.” All this, Macron has continued, will help to avoid “hybrid wars”, such as the current one experienced at the EU’s external borders with Belarus.
The reform will seek a “political governance of the Schengen area” similar to that developed with the eurozone, in the words of Macron, all with the intention of having a Europe “capable of controlling its borders,” reports BFM television.
Along these lines, Macron stressed that the intention of Paris is “to advance the European migration package” with a closer work with the countries of origin, something for which periodic ministerial meetings will be necessary.
France, as it has been insisting, will also give European Defense an important role, pointing out the importance of “drawing a European strategic sovereignty” that can face “common threats”.
In terms of foreign policy, the French president has pointed out the importance of the relationship with Africa to ensure “peace and prosperity”, for which he has advocated establishing a ‘New Deal’ between Europe and the African continent. In this framework, France will organize a summit between the European Union and the African Union in February in Brussels.
Another of the great summits on the agenda of the French presidency will be a meeting, on March 10 and 11, focused on the community economy. “Our Europe must be a Europe where we can produce, create wealth,” emphasized Macron, who has defended the creation of “a credible budgetary and financial framework.”
Macron has received criticism from the opposition for the dates on which France will assume the rotating presidency of the EU – from January to June 2022 – on the eve of a presidential election that could remove him from the Elysee. Against this, Macron has defended himself in his speech stating that “they have not chosen the calendar”, but that it is “the result of the implementation of Brexit.”
“Perhaps the policy of France will change, although I am sure that France will continue to be France. In any case I will do everything possible and I will do it in the coming months until our electoral deadlines,” he stressed.
Another of the star proposals presented by Macron has been a new two-euro coin, also coinciding with the 20 years since the single currency was adopted. “This is the first time that we have changed the design of this piece,” added the French Secretary of State for European Affairs, Clément Beaune.
Among the other proposals of France for his presidency, Macron has highlighted the support for the ecological transition, “one of the objectives will be the establishment of the carbon adjustment mechanism at the borders”. Macron has even warned that soy, beef or even coffee could be banned in Europe if they contribute to deforestation.
After Macron’s press conference, the President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, congratulated him on the “ambitious agenda”. “The priorities of the French presidency, starting with social issues, seek to promote the strengthening of Europe,” he indicated in a message through his Twiiter account, so the European Parliament “is ready to collaborate.”