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Michel Barnier’s determined plea to US earlier than Brexit: ‘EU wants you greater than ever!’

Michael Barnier discusses plans for future in French politics

In December, Brussels didn’t waste any time and introduced a brand new plan to enhance relations with the US forward of President Joe Biden‘s inauguration. The European Commission outlined 4 main coverage areas to deal with: well being response, local weather change, commerce and tech, and safety. Regardless of Brussels’ goodwill, the 2 sides already look like at loggerheads.

In January, Mr Biden signed an govt order to tighten “Buy American” necessities in federal authorities procurement – a primary step to fulfilling his marketing campaign promise to bolster the nation’s manufacturing sector however an enormous blow to the economic system of the 27 EU member states.

And regardless of strain from Brussels to repeal the Jones Act to permit better competitors within the delivery sector, administration officers introduced Mr Biden will even quickly reiterate his assist for the legislation, which requires items shipped inside the US to be transported on American vessels.

They are saying this might assist “invest in building offshore renewable energy and put Americans to work doing it”.

Financial tensions between the US and EU had been already fairly excessive.

The Trump administration positioned billions in tariffs on European items, and each the US and EU lately concluded a rancorous commerce dispute over subsidies to their main aviation corporations.

Brussels has been making an attempt in useless to strengthen transatlantic relations for nearly a decade – and even hoped the US may assist cease Britain leaving the EU.

Michel Barnier’s determined plea to US earlier than Brexit: ‘EU wants you greater than ever!’ (Image: GETTY)

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US President Joe Biden’s inauguration (Image: GETTY)

In November, 2015, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, who on the time was a Particular Advisor to the President of the European Fee on European Defence and Safety Coverage, travelled all the way in which to Washington to make a plea to the US authorities.

Just a few days earlier than, a collection of coordinated Islamist terrorist assaults had taken place in Paris, killing a minimum of 130 individuals.

Mr Barnier mentioned: “Europe needs you now more than ever.

“Europe is going through each exterior and inside threats that we are able to most successfully deal with collectively.

“There are those threats we very easily perceive as common ones.

“Critical threats that jeopardise our lifestyle and the freedoms presently loved in Europe and North America.”

Stressing for cooperation, the French politician mentioned Russia tearing up the rules of international relations and the “the malign progress of ISIS threatening huge territories”.

Mr Barnier then emphasised there were risks and threats that, even though might have been less salient in Washington, were nevertheless very real, such as the refugee crisis and Brexit.

Urging the US to take in more refugees and increasing humanitarian funding, Mr Barnier said: “The refugee disaster is each a humanitarian catastrophe and a terrific problem to Europe’s unity and resilience.”

The second menace, Mr Barnier famous, was the danger of political disintegration of the European undertaking.

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The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier (Image: GETTY)

He explained: “The UK has introduced a referendum on its future relationship with the EU.

“Populist sentiment is on the rise in Europe.

“The issues we face are testing for the unity of our widespread undertaking and societies.

“When our borders are perceived as open and our security as fragile, it is the breeding ground for populism and in-fighting.”

He concluded: “I fear difficult times ahead for the EU. This project of peace, prosperity and integration could very easily become one of dislocation and fragmentation.

“And if the EU fragments, that can have profound penalties for the Western liberal order, for our partnership and for the capability of Europeans to contribute to transatlantic prosperity and safety.

“These days are indeed moments of truth for European leaders, who must find the political and collective courage to face up to these urgent challenges and relaunch the EU project on sounder footing. That is the sense of President Juncker’s work and commitment, including on security and defense.”

The US administration appeared to absorb Mr Barnier’s recommendation, because it did find yourself meddling with the Brexit referendum the next 12 months.

Two months earlier than the plebiscite, former US President Barack Obama visited London and warned Britain {that a} commerce take care of the US wouldn’t be a precedence if British voters selected to go away the EU.

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Former US President Barack Obama and former Prime Minister David Cameron (Image: GETTY)

Mr Obama mentioned: “The UK is going to be in the back of the queue.”

On the time, his remarks had been furiously rejected by Brexiteers, who suspected David Cameron’s authorities to be the mastermind behind them.

They pointed to the President’s alternative of the phrase “queue”, quite than the American utilization of “line”, as proof of British involvement in scripting Mr Obama’s remark.

One of many individuals who reacted with fury to the feedback was Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who on the time was nonetheless Mayor of London and main the Vote Go away marketing campaign.

Mr Johnson claimed it was “ridiculous” for Britain to be bullied like that.

Based on Vote Go away insider Lord David Owen, although, that second was essential to successful the referendum.

In an unique interview with, the previous International Secretary and SDP co-founder mentioned: “I was quite convinced we would win the referendum after Barack Obama’s visit.

“That was the one second when the opinion polls actually modified.

“There was an argument whether there was a three or five percent shift in favour of coming out.

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Lord David Owen (Image: GETTY)

From that moment on we were even steven Lord Owen noted Boris made it If I had been the leader of the campaign I 2909562

French President Emmanuel Macron (Image: PA)

“From that second on we had been even-steven.”

Lord Owen noted: “Boris made it.

“If I had been the leader of the campaign I would have made a speech against other leaders interfering with our domestic policies.

“As an alternative, he was livid. Boris scoffed at Obama. And that labored.”

Mr Barnier has played an important role in shaping the future relationship between the EU and Britain.

A mere month after the UK voted to leave the bloc, Brussels announced he would be the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union.

Commenting on the appointment, former President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker said: “I wished an skilled politician for this troublesome job.”

For the 2020 trade talks, Mr Barnier was once again the main negotiator and despite months of tensions, the two sides reached an agreement on Christmas Eve.

Now, there is mounting speculation the French politician might be mulling a possible bid in next year’s presidential election, as he announced on Tuesday he was setting up a political faction under the name “Patriot and European”.

A possible bid by Mr Barnier Is being closely watched by French President Emmanuel Macron’s camp, as he would eat at the pro-European, centre-right electorate.

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