News analysis

French charm meets German obstinacy: Not a perfect match

When Mr Emmanuel Macron was elected as France's president in May 2017, a sigh of relief could be heard throughout Europe. With Mr Macron, who had defeated right-wing candidate Marine Le Pen in the run-off, Europe would have roughly five years to get its act together - and to protect itself against the forces of populism and narcissism.

This narrative got even stronger after Germany's Dr Angela Merkel was re-elected a little later that year. Five years should be enough to eventually reform the European Union, the Euro and European institutions, the thinking went.

Please or to continue reading the full article. Learn more about ST PREMIUM.

Enjoy unlimited access to ST's best work

  • Exclusive stories and features on multiple devices
  • In-depth analyses and opinion pieces
  • ePaper and award-winning multimedia content
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 21, 2019, with the headline 'French charm meets German obstinacy: Not a perfect match'. Print Edition | Subscribe