Macron is prioritizing reform of the Schengen area during the French EU Council Presidency

French President Emmanuel Macron announced this Thursday the goals of France under the EU Council Presidency, which he will hold from January, including reform of the Schengen area with climate change and economic recovery at the center of the proposals.

France, at the head of the European Council, will contribute to a “more sovereign Europe” by “protecting” the borders, for which it will lead a “reform of the texts to improve the internal functioning” of the Schengen area Limits in a Crisis “.

The reform will seek a “political governance of the Schengen area”, similar to that developed with the euro area, in the words of Macron, all with the intention of having a Europe that “is able to meet its borders control “, reports BFM-Fernsehen.

Macron is prioritizing reform of the Schengen area during the French EU Council Presidency
Macron is prioritizing reform of the Schengen area during the French EU Council Presidency

With this in mind, Macron emphasized that the intention of Paris was to “advance the European migration package” through closer cooperation with the countries of origin, for which regular ministerial meetings were necessary.

France will, as it has insisted, also assign an important role to European defense, pointing out the importance of “creating a strategic European sovereignty” capable of countering “common threats”.

In terms of foreign policy, the French President has pointed out the importance of relations with Africa for “peace and prosperity”, for which he has advocated a “New Deal” between Europe and the African continent. In this context, France will organize a summit between the European Union and the African Union in Brussels in February.

Another major summit on the French Presidency’s agenda will be a meeting on March 10th and 11th dedicated to the community economy. “Our Europe must be a Europe in which we can produce and create prosperity,” stressed Macron, who has defended the creation of a “credible budget and financial framework”.

Macron has received criticism from the opposition for the dates when France will take over the rotating EU presidency from January to June 2022 on the eve of a presidential election that could remove him from the Elysee. Macron defended himself against this in his speech: “You did not choose the calendar”, but “the result of the implementation of Brexit”.

“Perhaps France’s policy will change, although I am sure that France will continue to be France. In any case, I will do everything and I will do it in the months ahead, before our election deadlines,” he said.

Another star proposal from Macron was a new two-euro coin, which also coincides with the 20 years since the introduction of the single currency. “This is the first time we’ve changed the design of this piece,” added French Secretary of State for European Affairs, Clément Beaune.

Among the other proposals from France for his presidency, Macron highlighted its support for the ecological transition, “one of the goals will be the establishment of a carbon offset 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, are aimed at promoting the strengthening of Europe,” he said in a message on his Twiiter account, so that the European Parliament is “ready to work together”.

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