Merkel welcomes Macron vision of Europe

German Chancellor Angela Merkel welcomes French President Emmanuel Macron’s speech on EU reform, her spokesman said, without giving details on how she would go about improving the way the European Union is run.

Macron offered a sweeping vision for Europe’s future in a speech in Sorbonne University in Paris, calling for the EU to cooperate more closely on defence, immigration, tax and social policy, and for the single currency bloc to have its own budget.

Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said Berlin shared Macron’s view that the EU needs reforms and that his speech contained “a lot of material” for debate on the issue.

“This discussion is necessary and sensible,” Seibert told a regular news conference, adding that EU leaders would have a chance to talk at a meeting in Estonia on Thursday.

Macron said he hoped his ideas would be taken into account in Germany’s coalition building negotiations, talks that are not expected to begin until mid-October and may take months.

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