French President Emmanuel Macron highlighted the urgency for Europe to reduce its dependence on the US, Politico.eu reported.
Macron’s call for Europe to reduce dependence on the US met with criticism amidst growing push for strategic autonomy
The premier made the statement during an interview on his plane after a three-day state visit to China. It raised concerns among some European China observers due to the elaborate welcome he received from President Xi Jinping.
French president has come under heavy criticism for his comments on Europe’s involvement in any potential conflict between the US and China over Taiwan, as he warned against Europe becoming a “vassal” to either power.
While Macron’s comments reiterated his objective of achieving “strategic autonomy” for Europe, which involves avoiding economic and military dependencies, his remarks on Taiwan caused outrage on both sides of the Atlantic.
Macron emphasized that Europe should be a “third superpower”, alongside the US and China, according to Politico.
According to Les Echos, the president stated: “Do we [Europeans] have an interest in speeding up on the subject of Taiwan? No. The worst of things would be to think that we Europeans must be followers on this subject and adapt ourselves to an American rhythm and a Chinese overreaction.”
Macron warns Europe to avoid being involved in crises, says it could lead to a “trap” for the continent
In his recent statement, the 45-year-old warned that Europe should avoid being embroiled in crises that do not concern them, as this would be a trap for the continent, especially as it has gained more autonomy following the Covid pandemic.
He stressed that if there were an escalation of conflict between the US and China, Europe would not have the time or resources to finance its strategic autonomy and would be forced to become a “vassal,” rather than the third pole in the world order that it could become with a few years to develop this capability.
Macron acknowledged that the need for Europe’s strategic autonomy was widely accepted and highlighted the accelerated growth of European power in recent years.
However, he reassured that Europe had responded rapidly by devising its own European IRA, which aims to enhance domestic green technology and critical raw material production.
Furthermore, Macron stated that his talks with Xi had been useful in challenging China’s complacency towards Russia. He noted that the objective of the dialogue with China was to establish common approaches toward the war in Ukraine, in order to consolidate a unified stance.