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President Macron’s State Visit to Germany: Celebrating Democracy and Strengthening European Ties

On Sunday, May 26th, the Jacques Delors Centre had the honour of meeting French President Macron at the Festival of Democracy, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the German Basic Law. Together with the Hertie School, represented by Cornelia Woll and students of Hertie’s futurEU initiative, the delegation of the Jacques Delors Centre was able to engage in dialogues with Presidents Emmanuel Macron and Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Furthering European Integration

President Macron’s visit to the Festival of Democracy entailed not only the celebration of the past 75 years of the German Basic Law but also a forward-looking dialogue on the future of Europe. Our encounter provided a platform for stimulating discussions on core European policy issues such as the EU budget, cohesion, competitiveness, growth, and the rule of law, highlighting the shared commitment to fostering a stronger, more unified Europe – all topics that President Macron reaffirmed the following day in his speech in Dresden.

Franco-German Cooperation

The discussions with President Macron underscored the importance of Franco-German cooperation in advancing key European issues. The exchange of ideas and the reinforcement of Franco-German dialogue was the overarching theme of this state visit. Our Franco-German policy expert Yann Wernert extensively commented on the state visit in both German and French media, offering valuable insights into its significance. You can find his considerations here.

Exchange with Students

Students from the futurEU initiative, a student-led effort founded in 2019 by Hertie School students, had the opportunity to present their competition to President Macron. This year’s winning team, notably from Sciences Po, convinced with their proposal on green jobs in the EU. Engaging with the students, President Macron emphasised the crucial role of the younger generations in shaping the future of Europe.

Remembering Henrik Enderlein

The visit also served as a poignant reminder of Henrik Enderlein, founding father of the Jacques Delors Centre and close friend of President Macron. His vision for a united and prosperous Europe continues to inspire the Centre’s work, a legacy that Macron acknowledged and honoured during our exchange.