GB News panel savages Macron tantrum on Aukus deal
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AUKUS was the deal between the US, the UK and Australia to build eight nuclear submarines as part of a military pact which France was left out of. French Ambassador to Washington Philippe Etienne called France’s exclusion a “betrayal”. France’s foreign ministry has also reported that they were only made aware of the deal “through media reports.” The deal has made restoring the relationship between Joe Biden and France, an even slower process, one that has been slow ever since the president was sworn into office.
As well as the AUKUS deal, there have been long-lasting issues regarding steel and aluminium tariffs which are still unresolved, and the US has been criticised for not being clear enough about what it hopes to achieve from reforming the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
And European Commission President Von der Leyen has also been critical of the AUKUS deal, asking for clarity about how the US conducted itself over AUKUS before being able to carry on with “business as usual”.
Council President Michel also questioned America’s “transparency and loyalty” as an ally.
France has now seen a nuclear submarine deal that it had been planning with Australia for five years scrapped in favour of the alternative project of AUKUS, reportedly without any notice from the US.
Mr Macron was furious as this no doubt dampened the impact of France’s Indo-Pacific Strategy.
President Macron is now pushing hard for his “strategic autonomy” at the EU level, something he has pushed Europeans to embrace in order to revitalise NATO and address global challenges such as the pandemic and climate change.
But last week, a call between Biden and Macron softened the tension between the pair.
Following Mr Macron’s fury, there were doubts as to whether the transatlantic Trade and Tech Council (TTC) would take place as scheduled.
The TTC is due to serve as a forum for the United States and EU member states to coordinate approaches for global trade, economic, and technology issues and to deepen transatlantic trade and economic ties.
But in the call on Wednesday, Washington admitted they should have consulted Paris over an Indo-Pacific security pact, particularly since it ruined the multi-billion dollar submarine supply deal Paris were arranging with Canberra.
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But following the call, commission spokesperson Miriam García Ferrer tweeted: “The Commission confirms that the Trade and Technology Council (TTC) will take place in Pittsburgh next week.”
EU trade chief Valdis Dombrovskis also wrote on Twitter that he and Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager are due to meet U.S. Secretary Antony Blinken and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo.
He wrote: “Strategic alliances are about shaping common approaches and also overcoming difficulties.”
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