Macron: A Europe of ambition // Future of Europe Speech, April 2018

Just another WordPress site

Macron: A Europe of ambition // Future of Europe Speech, April 2018

A Europe of ambition, of a reinvented sovereignty, a lively democracy Mister President of the European Parliament, Mister President of the European Commission, Dear Ministers, Dear Commissioners, Dear deputies, I am pleased and honoured respond to your invitation on this day, Mister President, in order to, as you have recalled just now, be able to freely discuss the situation of our Europe in a very particular context Freely discussing because the proposals, the speeches, I have done them already a few months ago, in particular at the Sorbone, and this time for exchange that seems indispensable to me in this place where you make our Europe living in its diverse sensitivities, its divergences and convergences, while building the essential compromises that make it move forward We will discuss in a context that makes our responsibility even bigger First of all, a context of division and even sometimes doubts in the heart of Europe In a context in which Brexit is still discussed, is still worked- I would like here to greet the work conducted during a few months by Michel Barnier- but it is also the one of a doubt that has been born in some of our European countries and that, month after month, has managed to arise sensitivities that question what might seems sometimes as basics A context in which some sort of European civil war reemerges, where our differences, sometimes our national egoism, seem more important than what unites us face to the rest of the world A context in which the illiberal fascination, and I will come back to this, increases every day A context in which the geopolitical threats, and we will get back indeed during the discussion, give Europe a bigger responsibility every day Those big international conflicts, in the East as in the Sahel, but also the emerging authoritarian powers and an elaborated strategy that aims clearly to question the multilateral framework where Europe had taken its place and that was the framework for its influence but also where we have collectively built peace And today we discuss in a moment of great transformations linked to the digital, the global warming and its consequences, which deeply question the fundamentals of the industrial society, that had created the basis for our grand grand compromises, inspire fears that lead to revisit certain important equilibriums and impose us to rethinking the agenda of our collective action And so, this moment awards us a very particular liability We cannot do as if, somehow, our conversations were ordinary This moment, it separates us from the European elections ahead when we will have to revitalize our fight for the ideals that made us And I want, in order to launch the discussion, to simply share with you two strong convictions The first one is that, if we decide to abandon our commitment to democracy and all that it brings to Europe, they will get out of track The second one is that we can in this framework, and we should, build a new European sovereignty through which we will provide a clear, firm response to our fellow citizens that we can protect them, to give a response to the disorders in the world Indeed, in this difficult moment, the European democracy, I sincerely believe so, is our best chance The worst of the mistakes would be to abandon our model, I dare to say, our identity Even here in Strasbourg as in Brussels, you vitalize every day this democracy in Europe of which Tocqueville talked about Our identity is firstly this democracy respectful of the individual, of minorities, of fundamental rights, which we call, I claim again, the liberal democracy

I don’t want let this fatal delusion to set in, which, let’s never forget, as precipitated our continent towards the abyss The illusion of the strong power, of nationalism, of the abandonment of freedoms And I reject this idea that even wins Europe that democracy will be condemned to being powerless Face to the authoritarianism that surrounds us, the answer is not an authoritarian democracy but the authority of democracy Because this freedom emancipates and protects the individual, a Parliament like yours, like ours, is a European miracle Peacefully assembling the elected representatives of the peoples of Europe to debate together in their differences, strong and onerous of their history and of what has sometimes divided them, is a unique model in the world This treasure, we have made it live for seventy years Let’s not take it for granted We have taken all the risks and we have gone through the worst as to arrive there and, if we want to be even more precise, let’s have a look around us, compare and see sometimes the powers that might fascinate some because of a pretended efficacy Where in the world is there this level of requirements in economic, geopolitical, diplomatic and military matters but also in respect of minorities, freedom of conscience, gender equality and respect for private life? Where elsewhere at this level, with the same vitality and the same strength? There are divisions between the countries at the heart to this hemicycle, but beyond those divergences, this democratic model that gathers us together is exceptional in the world The European identity is more than a democracy anxious for freedom; it is a unique culture in the world that combines this passion for freedom, the taste for equality and the commitment to the diversity of ideas, languages, landscapes This European model is neither abstract nor dated It is embodied today in our engagement with the protection of the environment, climate and health It is developed today in our approach to the digital revolution where only the Europeans are as attached to freedom of innovation as they are to a fair regulation or the protection of the private life This identity distinguishes us of course from the authoritarian powers above all, but also today, we must clearly see that, from certain of our closest allies Our American partner, with whom we share so much, faces today the temptation of disengagement from multilateralism, the climate issue, or trade matters This model, I am convinced, is powerful as no another is, and just as much fragile, because its strength depends on our level of engagement and demand Every day, we must defend it together And so, in order to be up to this engagement, the first requirements are truth and responsibility Some attribute all our evils to a reviled Europe. While fleeing their own responsibilities, they say with insolence that the people do not want Europe anymore They propose gilded paths, sometimes we believe them They shun then their obligations when it is time to drive their people to the end of the adventure Some others claim sagaciously that we should not speed up as to not pushing the people, because that would be playing in the hands of the populists These ones would like to get used to scores we already know: the paralysis, not acknowledging a time that is ours I believe that nothing is not untruth anymore It would be accommodating, indeed, to dissolve the peoples or to wind their passions up to avoid putting a path forward Criticizing without proposing, destroying without debating It is not the people who have abandoned the idea of Europe but the treason of the clerics what threatens it We must listen to the European people’s anger today They do not need being lectured but a new project with a requirement of daily efficacy And those who trade with this anger that they arouse, recommend for future a sole path with no return to yesterday’s nationalism

We have experienced all the ways and all consequences To revive the Europe of peoples, we must therefore accept to act differently by inspiring us on the principles of the democracy and facing the facts: how to be satisfied of European elections in which less than one citizen out of two votes? Hence, let’s build in the year to come a real structured debate about convictions and proposals We cannot do as yesterday, that to say; refuse to speak about Europe, to divide the places, to blame Brussels or Strasbourg for all the evils Continuing in doing so, it is to decide to play a game of fools that might be accommodating for each and every of us but that will lead us not to solve any problem I, like you, believe in the greatness and the complexity of democracy As representatives of the peoples of Europe you embody it, you make choices every day, you define the compromises, you forge the solutions because you have gotten the mandate of the peoples And our common duty is to keep this European democracy alive, deep inside, so young That is the reason why, with the elections upstream and given the time constraint of the electoral campaigns, we need to revitalize the debate, create this European public space that often we have wasted It is in this spirit of attempting and innovating that I have proposed the citizens’ consultations this year I will launch them in France this very afternoon, an honest debate, open, rough and difficult, but indispensable to know what unites and divides, to step out of the simplistic alternative between yes or no to a question of which we generally examine neither the presupposed nor the implicit texts But to have democratically a critical debate towards the Europe that is ours I am delighted that all Member States have accepted to share this project, I know about president Juncker and European Commission engagement in this action and want to thank them I am delighted of the essential role of mister president Tajani in this exercise and I want to thank him as well I invite every one of you in your countries and all over Europe to animate, participate in these essential debates because those are a condition of this democratic vitality The second conviction that I want to quickly share with you is the need for European sovereignty To defend the European idea it is not to defend an abstract idea, the dilution at a certain extent of our own sovereignties, no, it is to acknowledge that, face to the major disruptions in the world, the great transformations, this moment we live in, we need a sovereignty stronger than ours, complementary and not a replacement, which will only allow handling the big migrations, the global insecurity, the economic, social and environmental transformations, to provide with the appropriate responses This is the European sovereignty I believe in On this subject, you have done a lot and I want to congratulate you but, from now to the end of the legislature in spring 2019, we must reach concrete results in several fronts On migration, by unblocking the poisoned debate about the Dublin regulation and the reallocations, but also in going beyond this debate, by building both internal and external solidarity which our Europe needs I also propose to create a European programme to directly support financially the local communities welcoming and integrating refugees The second issue is digital taxation, following the Commission proposal to create a short-term tax to put an end to the most shocking abuses. I support this proposal, which is essential and will moreover, it is my wish, provide own resources for the next budget The reform of the Economic and Monetary Union is a third essential front before the end of this mandate, defining a new roadmap will allow moving forward,

step by step, on the Banking Union and the introduction of a budgetary capacity that would favour stability and convergence in the Eurozone Finally, in which concerns us all, it is not only a currency or a treaty; it is a sentiment of belonging, in other words, a culture. And I would like to evoke, because it is essential, the establishment of European universities that effectively progress, or the implementation of the Erasmus exchange programme. But I want to insist on one of your ongoing tasks, essential to me, the one on copyright, of the protection of authors and the artistic creation This profusion which infuses our societies is the broth of culture without which Europe would no longer be this continent of vital diversity and creative genius On these four fronts, this mandate has a particular responsibility and you have understood what will be France position But beyond that, we must build this European sovereignty, fulfilled and integrated, to protect our fellow citizens With regards to internal and external security and defence, along the past few months, we have come a long way, and I greet the work that your assembly is doing on the European funds for defence Face to all the ongoing tensions with neighbours like Russia, Europe has shown a face of unity and sovereignty We need to continue with this work The sovereignty is economic and commercial We have, there too, showed this face of unity and I am glad of the progress we have reached these past few months with regard to economic and commercial sovereignty to defend our strategic sectors on investment, to the Commission’s initiative, and it was an essential progress to pursue on trade matters, and we will definitely come back to this during the debate, a united position, volunteering when it comes to the development of our economic opportunities, but protectionist of our legitimate interests, of our workers as well as our consumers I believe in this economic sovereignty which, through the competitiveness that every State builds with its reforms, by the indispensable solidarity that we should, first of all, develop at the heart of the Economic and Monetary Union, and by a more realistic commercial policy, we should pursue Sovereignty, it is also the climate and energetic sovereignty It is crucial We must swiftly open the debate to upward the European contribution in the framework of the Paris Agreement We are here finalizing the discussion on the energy-climate package, but it is clear that we should open a new stage Many among you are already engaged on this and I wish that we could in the upcoming months reopen the debate on a floor price for carbon France will push for this idea of a minimum price and France will support the idea of a border tax for CO2 It is neither a technical whim nor a technical instrument, but a condition for a credible energy transition The fourth sovereignty that we should move forward, it is the one on health and alimentation In our daily policies, in our budgetary choices today and tomorrow, we must defend good food sovereignty It is what our fellow citizens expect from us and we owe it to them It is good for our economies and our territories, it is good for our fellow citizens and it is a coherent choice with our commitments in the long-term The fifth sovereignty that we must defend it is, of course, the digital sovereignty and here, I want to greet your work that has led to putting together what is considered today in all international debates as the reference regulation, which allows protecting the personal data of our fellow citizens Where others took us for those who, in a way, proposed illegitimate protections, we are becoming the unique geographical space in the world where we promote innovation and breakthrough innovation and I will defend these choices in the coming debates and where, at the same time, we are able to protect individual freedoms Lastly, this Europe of freedom and equality rests upon the foundation of social values that we have proclaimed together in Göteborg This social Europe is also that of sovereignty, of that foundation in which we believe There are differences but we should not nourish the divergences, the

actual meaning of the European adventure it is an accrued convergence This is why we have fought to regulate the posted workers these past few months The European Parliament has allowed improving, even more, the compromise reached the Council and I am delighted that this reform will soon be successful I want to welcome the work that has been done It is precisely the image of a protective and efficient Europe These European sovereignties, we must keep building them They should be at the heart of the coherent project and they should nourish the philosophy of the Multiannual Financial Framework to come I want to finish my remarks on this point; this budget that we are going to discuss must reveal a coherent, efficient and convergent political project France is ready to ramp up its contribution But for that, it is a refoundation of the budget itself that must be considered, by creating new own resources I am in favor, on the digital as well as on certain energy resources, by removing the discounts that will not survive Brexit, by financing with dignity the European action on defense and on migration, by modernizing the current policies and by defining conditionality, I would rather say criteria, of convergence particularly in fiscal and social matters We must not deny any ambition of the current policies but we should increase ambition on the new ones that we bring forward It is in this sense that France will act in the upcoming months You have acknowledged it, ladies and gentlemen, the European Parliament it is to my mind the seat of the European legitimacy, of its responsibility and so, of its vitality This is where part of the future of Europe is played out, Europe as the roundup of our sovereignty for and with an even bigger sovereignty, which unites us This unity serving to peace and solidarity offers the world a unique space of stability and security It is here that we must put down roots for the renaissance of a Europe carried by the spirit of its peoples I wish that the months to come we manage to go beyond the cleavages between the North and the South, the East and the West, the little ones and the big ones, the fall back on national egoisms I belong to a generation that has not experienced war and I belong to a generation that is enjoying the luxury of forgetting what the predecessors have experienced There are many today who think that we can continue to favour the usual confrontations, the certainty of yesterday because we have gotten used to them, the well-known and well-concerted divisions But I also come from a place and a family that have experienced all the losses of our past history Therefore, the choices are simple, I do not want to belong to a generation of sleepwalkers, I do not want to belong to a generation that has forgotten its own past, or that will refuse to see the torments of its own present Everyone in the opening times will take up their responsibilities, but I want to belong to a generation that has decided to defend its democracy, because it is not a word we have got used to or in which we have made ourselves lethargic, it is a word that makes sense because it is the result of past battles I want to belong to a generation that will defend this European sovereignty because we have fought for having it, because it is meaningful and because it is the condition that will allow the future generation to choose then, themselves, their destiny And I will not give in to any fascination for authoritarian sovereignties; I will not give in to any facility of present time, but I think, together, our responsibility in the upcoming months is to organize a true European debate, to have the real European objectives, that will only allow our peoples to choose, those who want an Europe that does not propose anymore, those who want a Europe of withdrawal, those who want

the usual Europe or those who are ready to bring forward a Europe of ambition, of a reinvented sovereignty, of a living democracy, on which we will believe I thank you