This is full support, as France will take the presidency, as of January 1, of the Council of the European Union. “Our French friends can count on our support from the first to the last day to lay the right foundations within the EU: for a sustainable economic recovery, in the fight against the climate crisis, in digitization and for a more sovereign Europe in the world ”, assured the German Minister of Foreign Affairs, Annalena Baerbock, Friday December 31st, indicates Le Monde.

The planets seem aligned: Germany has a new ambitious coalition, Emmanuel Macron wants to be the spearhead of a “powerful Europe”, Italy and Spain follow and the United Kingdom, which was dragging feet, is no longer a member country. According to the good wishes of the head of German diplomacy, the French presidency constitutes “an important opportunity [to] seize together to strengthen Europe and make it capable of meeting the challenges of tomorrow”.

Difficult year. For the moment, Emmanuel Macron has put three priorities on the agenda of his presidency: minimum wages throughout the EU, the regulation of major digital companies as well as the establishment of a tax. carbon at borders. Ambitious subjects that the French president hopes to bring to bear to illustrate his pro-European appetite, but also for domestic political interests, in view of the presidential election of April 2022. The President of the Republic will therefore have the role of broker and facilitator and will be constrained in time (6 months) as in capacity.

Not to mention that 2022 looks to be shaping up to be a difficult year on the international stage for the European Union. The Ukrainian case has shown how Moscow disregards its European partners vis-à-vis the United States, considered to be Europe’s real policeman. Competition with the Americans remains fierce, as the case of the Australian submarines blown to the French has revealed.

As for the rivalry between Washington and Beijing, it pushes Europeans to be followers or to play the balancing act between superpowers, while the Taiwanese question, among others, remains thorny. The European Union remains fragmented by difficult governance and divergent views (Hungary, Poland), unsure of its ambitions for European defense, and the complications remain significant: Turkey is a delicate partner, even if Erdogan seems for the time being have put water in his wine, and the security situation in the Sahel remains worrying.