Foreign Affairs

President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Germany: a new impetus in Franco-German relations?

June 2024
By Eleonore Para

French President Emmanuel Macron made a state visit to Germany from 26th to 28th May at the invitation of the President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Frank-Walter Steinmeier. With two weeks to go before the European elections, Europe was the main theme of his visit, which was followed by a Franco-German Council of Ministers.

This was the first State visit by a French President to Germany since 2000, when President Jacques Chirac visited. The purpose of the visit was highly symbolic: to highlight the shared attachment of France and Germany to democracy.

For three days, Emmanuel Macron went to meet the Germans. Berlin, Dresden and Münster gave Emmanuel Macron a warm welcome for three days. On his arrival, he chatted with young people from both countries. He was the only foreign head of state invited to take part in the popular festival organised in Berlin to mark the 75th anniversary of the Basic Law.

In Dresden, at the Festival of Europe, he set out his vision, partly in German, for the future of the continent. The President called on all generations to invest in the Europe of tomorrow. He called for a democratic, strong and sovereign Europe. ‘Europe can die’, he warned in the face of the rise of the far right and external threats.

President Emmanuel Macron travelled to Münster for the third and final day of his State visit, where he received the ‘International Peace Prize of Westphalia’ for his ‘European commitment’.

The 24th Franco-German Council of Ministers and a Franco-German Security and Defence Council were held at the end of this State visit, in the presence of the President of the Republic and the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Olaf Scholz, on 28 May in Meseberg, near Berlin.

As a new European cycle gets underway with the forthcoming European elections, Germany and France wish to propose a joint contribution to the EU’s strategic agenda for stimulating growth in Europe over the next five years.