Merkel: British EU immigration cap would have price

Posted May 20, 2017

France's new President Emmanuel Macron has secured backing from key ally Chancellor Angela Merkel for his bid to shake up Europe, despite scepticism in Berlin over his proposed reforms.

"This isn't malicious, but I can't have all the good sides and then say there's a cap of 100,000 or 200,000 European Union citizens, more aren't allowed into Britain - perhaps researchers as well, but no others, please", Merkel said.

France's new President Macron urges major reforms in EU; German Chancellor Merkel says Berlin open to EU treaty change.

French President Emmanuel Macron's office is delaying the announcement of the new government while authorities check the tax records and backgrounds of potential ministers.

Mrs Merkel called Mr Macron's visit an honour and a sign of the deep friendship between the two European powerhouses.

Underlining the concerns over Macron's proposals, Germany's biggest selling daily Bild warned ahead of the French leader's meeting with Merkel that before seeking deeper European Union integration, "France must once again be at the same level as Germany politically and economically".

Leftist firebrand Jean-Luc Melenchon said that Philippe's appointment as premier showed the right had been "annexed" by the tentacular Macron.

Travelling to the German capital to meet the veteran leader in his first official trip overseas, Macron used the opportunity to call for a "historic reconstruction" of Europe.

Fuchs said Macron, who defeated populist candidate Marine Le Pen on May 7, will be a stronger advocate of European Union integration than his predecessor, Francois Hollande.

"Macron and Merkel seemed more aligned than I expected, with Merkel even saying she wouldn't exclude treaty changes, which the market welcomed", Florian Hense, a senior economist at Berenberg, said.

The first cabinet meeting will take place on Thursday.

Merkel also underlined the need for closer cooperation in order to push new European Union initiatives forward, and promised to be a "trusting, friendly and close" partner of France.

"That is going to be easier said than done, it appears, with USA production running at its fastest pace since August 2015 and data, yesterday, confirming that Chinese growth momentum continues to moderate", ANZ strategists wrote in a daily note.

Forces of division have been closing in on Le Pen since her electoral loss to centrist Emmanuel Macron, but she dismissed the notion that there were links between her loss and a series of events widely seen as potentially weakening her party.

French far-right Marine Le Pen is getting ready to announce whether she plans to run for a seat in the National Assembly in next month's parliamentary elections.

Having been economy minister under his predecessor as president, Socialist Francois Hollande, Macron was accused by his critics of being too left-wing during the vicious election campaign.

In addition, the rate of unemployment is estimated at close to 4 percent in Germany, less than half of the rate in France (9.9 percent).

"I have never defended [the idea of] Eurobonds or the mutualization of existing debt in the euro zone", Macron said.