GB News panel sows Macron’s anger over Aukus deal
Australia’s agreement with the United Kingdom and the United States, agreed on September 15, focuses on the development of nuclear-powered submarines. However, a condition for Australia to sign the pact meant that Canberra had to cancel a multibillion-dollar deal with France for 12 submarines.
Mathilde Androuet, MEP for the right-wing Identity and Democracy party, issued a statement saying the Aukus deal was “particularly unfair and in favor of Washington”.
She noted that Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, had already claimed that France had been treated “in an unacceptable manner” by Australia.
The MEP added that Charles Michel, President of the European Council, perceived a “lack of loyalty” from the United States to France.
She also added that Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said that “the European Union will make efforts to conclude trade deals with Australia” – despite the agreement. from Aukus.
France news: Mathilde Androuet declared that Aukus was “particularly unfair and in favor of Washington”
She added: “Moreover, the free trade agreement that the European Union has been negotiating since 2018 according to Canberra’s wishes, cannot be completed as is.
“To the regular complaints about these anti-ecological trade agreements and often contrary to the economic interests of European nations, we could add Australia’s recent lack of respect for France, a founding member of the European Union which must soon assume its presidency. .
“It appears essential for France, as more generally for our European nations, to reaffirm respect for contracts as a prerequisite for any commercial relationship with third countries.
“Otherwise, the image of Europe, already singularly damaged and threatened with degradation in the face of rival powers, would only deteriorate further.
READ MORE: Macron takes advantage of German uncertainty to lead EU with new alliance
France news: The Aukus agreement led to the abolition of a submarine agreement with France
France news: Jean-Pierre Thébault declared that the cancellation of the French agreement was a “betrayal in the making”
The ambassador called it a “betrayal in the making” to the broadcaster, and added that the nature of the contract saw an exchange of “technological secrets”.
He added: “It was (really) a real relationship of partnership, a real relationship of trust, of trust between two large countries of the Indo-Pacific.
“So it was something of a completely different nature from an ordinary contract. “
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France news: Scott Morrison says deal “would have been terribly against Australia’s interests”
The Prime Minister of Australia told SBS News: “We were working in good faith under contract, working together, paying our bills too, by the way.
“And in the course of paying our bills in this contract and working, a lot of our employees have developed great skills. It’s great for Australia.
The Prime Minister added that Australia’s initial deal with France “would have been terribly against Australia’s interests”, and said: “Of course when you make a difficult decision like this, it will not be welcomed by the other party to the contract. I understand that.
“But we’re just going to have to persevere, get more involved. And I think we’ll get there because at the end of the day we share the same principles, we share the same beliefs, and we share the same goals. “
France news: The Australian Prime Minister added “France is an excellent partner in the Pacific”
He said: “What is important to me is that we get back to a normal relationship with France, and that we continue the work that we were doing before – because the submarine contract was only one element. of our relationship.
“France is a great partner in the Pacific. France is a great partner among liberal democracies. We share values, we share a vision and we want to be partners of France. “
Dan Tehan, Australia’s Trade Minister, also played down fears that the Aukus dispute means Canberra will not get a trade deal with the EU.
He said, “It’s just business as usual when it comes to our negotiations on this free trade agreement.
“Everything indicates that it is in the interests of both the European Union and Australia to continue this FTA.
Additional reporting by Maria Ortega