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Merkel, Macron seek to revitalise ties to bolster EU

Merkel, Macron seek to revitalise ties to bolster EU

France's new President Emmanuel Macron secured backing from key ally Chancellor Angela Merkel for his bid to shake up Europe, despite scepticism in Berlin over his proposed reforms.

Macron and Merkel said they would work together more closely on defense, Euro zone reform and reducing bureaucracy.

This year, unemployment in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, should be around 4.0 percent, compared with 9.9 percent in France, according to the latest European Commission forecasts. "It will no longer be the case".

A day after his inauguration the fervently pro-EU Macron made his first trip overseas, visiting Germany, the other half of the power couple driving European integration.

To that end, Ms. Merkel said she would be ready to discuss changes to the European Union treaty to strengthen the bloc "if it makes sense".

"In the past, the subject of treaty change was a French taboo".

After his meeting with Merkel, Macron stressed that he was not in favour of eurobonds - loans underwritten by all members of the eurozone, which some conservative German politicians have described as a vision of "hell" for their voters.

During their meeting, followed by a dinner in the German chancellery, outside of which people had gathered to cheer Macron, the German and French leaders also discussed issues like the posted workers directive, the reform of the European Union asylum system and reciprocity in trade.

Visiting Berlin on Monday, Macron "did not push for major, ambitious reforms (of the EU) because he knows the chancellor can not deliver until the elections in September", said Judy Dempsey of the Carnegie Europe think-tank.

Travelling to the German capital to meet the veteran leader in his first official trip overseas, Macron used the opportunity to call for a "historic reconstruction" of Europe, the German news website Local.de reported.

Braless Emily Ratajkowski risks flashing EVERYTHING in boob-baring, see-through jumpsuit
She was seen in a sunshine yellow figure-hugging dress and later, she even spent time with Fanning at the beach in a pink dress. Then there are the movie stars like Robin Wright, Susan Sarandon, Michelle Williams, and Uma Thurman.

Mr Macron added, however, that "what I know is that we have investments to make (in Europe), and so we have to work on investment mechanisms for the future".

Yesterday's announcement follows the appointment of Edouard Philippe, a conservative lawmaker from the Republicains party, as prime minister.

For interior minister, Macron picked Gerard Collomb, the mayor of Lyon who was one of the first Socialists to support him.

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

Macron, who trounced far-right anti-EU leader Marine Le Pen in the election, urged a "historic reconstruction" of Europe to battle the populism sweeping the continent and widespread disillusionment with the bloc.

Mr Macron previously met Mrs Merkel when he visited Berlin in March as a candidate.

Jean-Yves Le Drian, outgoing Socialist defence minister and a close friend of ex-President Francois Hollande, was named foreign minister and minister for Europe.

Britain and the European Union are preparing for negotiations on Britain's departure.

The German-speaking father of three, who writes crime novels in his spare time, was elected to parliament in 2012.


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