Macron Pushes More Integrated Europe, With Eye on Germany

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"What Europe is missing today is a common strategic culture", said Mr Macron in his speech, at the Sorbonne, the oldest university in Paris.

"The chancellor welcomes the fact that the French president spoke with so much verve, with so much European passion, and that he presented a lot of substance for the upcoming and essential debate about the future of Europe", Seibert said.

Macron's proposals for a post-Brexit shake-up included a finance minister, budget and parliament for the 19-member eurozone, as well as a European "rapid reaction force" to work with national armies.

Macron said that Europe needs its own budget to "finance joint investments and assure stability when confronted by economic shocks..."

To reduce inequalities across the EU, Macron also suggested greater harmonization of EU tax policies - notably on corporate taxes, and taxing internet giants where they make money and not where they are registered.

The French President even proposed the founding of a "Disruption Innovation Agency" to finance research in artificial intelligence, invest in startups, and boost European champions in strategically important emerging technologies.

Mr Macron also proposed a shared European military intervention force and defence budget.

Mr Macron also wants a European border police, and asylum judges to adjudicate on which immigrants are allowed to stay on the continent.

The issue has emerged as a flashpoint between the prospective coalition partners even before exploratory talks - let alone negotiations - to form a government have begun.

"We have been wasting our time in a European civil war of words", Macron said, in his most impassioned speech since winning the presidency last May.

Juncker, however, did not support the idea of a separate eurozone budget or parliament.

Tusk, who coordinates European Union summits, on Tuesday said divorce negotiations were still falling short and it would be too early at Tallinn to launch talks on future ties between Britain and the European Union, a big demand by London.

Marine Le Pen's far-right National Front, struggling with internal strife and muddled strategy since her second-place showing in the May presidential race, failed to land a single Senate seat. A strong domestic economy (record low unemployment) and high standards of living have understandably contributed to Germans' satisfaction with the current state of affairs, and wanting more of the same.

Merkel, asked about potential cooperation with Macron, signaled that further euro-area integration can wait while she sets about forming a government.

Macron said the European Union should strengthen borders and protect the sovereignty of member states against uncontrolled migrant flows - speeding up asylum applications, setting up a central asylum office to hold background files, and helping countries where immigrants come from to stabilize their economies. "It is not about the slogans but what lies behind them", she said.

Speaking to CNN, the French leader said: "David Cameron didn't properly defend the yes and the Remain".

Macron suggested a European minimum wage, which would nevertheless be adapted to each member state's specific circumstances.

Still, Macron's insistence that a renewed Franco-German "partnership" will serve as the motor driving the European Union forward will be seen by others as another attempt to dismiss their concerns.

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