15th Oct 2019

France and Germany in new push for industrial champions

France and Germany have renewed their commitment to creating industrial champions in Europe.

At a meeting in Paris on Tuesday, the newly appointed French finance minister Thierry Bretton said, "Europe needs great industrial groups, Germany and France have a role to play as a motor".

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

  • Enthusiasm for the idea is not new (Photo: European Commission)

German economics minister Wolfgang Clement said, "we are in the process of developing a strategic co-operation with France in order to stand our ground in worldwide competition".

According to German daily Handelsblatt, the first concrete suggestions are set to come during a meeting between Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and Jacques Chirac on 26 April.

A joint statement by the two sides suggests there should be more bilateral co-operation in areas such as energy, research and development.

This enthusiasm for industrial champions in not new. In August last year, President Chirac said "Let's have a European competition policy that truly takes into account the realities of international competition".

"Let's strongly support the creation of European industrial champions".

Similarly, the German European Commissioner, Günter Verheugen, who is responsible for industry, appeared to be in favour of the idea when he called in January for a debate about how competition policy is applied towards mergers.

"If that favours the appearance of European champions, I am clearly in favour of it", he said at the time.

US to put tariffs on European whiskies, cheese

After a 15-year legal battle, the US was given the green light to impose tariffs on EU products. The EU is threatening countermeasures but wants to negotiate. Transatlantic ties have suffered another blow.


Why von der Leyen must put rights at core of business

Ursula von der Leyen's in-tray must include those European executives on trial for systematic workplace harassment, the break-up of European slavery rings, and allegations of European companies' abuse in palm oil, including child labour, land grabs, and deforestation.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersBrussels welcomes Nordic culture
  2. UNESDAUNESDA appoints Nicholas Hodac as Director General
  3. UNESDASoft drinks industry co-signs Circular Plastics Alliance Declaration
  4. FEANIEngineers Europe Advisory Group: Building the engineers of the future
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNew programme studies infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance
  6. UNESDAUNESDA reduces added sugars 11.9% between 2015-2017
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsEU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue: EU to raise key fundamental rights issues
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNo evidence that social media are harmful to young people
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersCanada to host the joint Nordic cultural initiative 2021
  10. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work
  12. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank

Latest News

  1. EU countries to halt arms sales to Turkey
  2. Nine Catalan separatist leaders given long jail terms
  3. Poland's right-wing ruler wins four more years
  4. EU powerless in new Syrian mayhem
  5. Hungarian opposition wins Budapest in blow to Orban
  6. New Dutch terror bill must not target aid workers
  7. EU proposes pesticide ban, but key documents still secret
  8. Brexit nail-biter and EU nominations This WEEK

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us