Global Affairs

France and the US - going beyond declarations of love

Post-Aukus reconciliation diplomacy aside, there is much potential for France in steering European policy on the Indo-Pacific

French President Emmanuel Macron and US President Joe Biden during their meeting at the French Embassy to the Vatican in Rome on Oct 29, 2021.PHOTO: AFP

"I was under the impression that certain things had happened that had not happened; I was under the impression that France had been informed before," US President Joe Biden told journalists after personally apologising over the weekend to French President Emmanuel Macron for the humiliation inflicted on Paris when Mr Macron discovered that France's massive submarine contract with Australia had been cancelled, in favour of a contract for the supply of US-made nuclear submarines to the Australians.

Mr Biden was seeking to reassure his French counterpart that there was nothing underhand about this episode, and that the only reason President Macron did not get to hear of the submarine deal in advance was that someone in either the US or Australian administrations had neglected to keep France informed.

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