French President Emmanuel Macron said that the European Union must keep forwarding the agenda to become independent in terms of technology, defence, and international finance even after President-elect Joe Biden takes over the charge in the United States.
Macron, during an interview with Le Grand Continent, said Donald Trump's defeat must not prompt the European countries into believing that they can once again rely on the US to defend the bloc's interests and security.
Macron backed the idea of self-reliance, adding that the United States will only respect the European Union as its ally if the bloc is sovereign in terms of its defence. The French president highlighted the European Union's usage of the American cloud computing services and the Iran nuclear deal as some of the vulnerabilities that come with the reliance on the US. He particularly underlined how the Trump administration used the dollar's global reserve currency status as leverage during the Iran nuclear deal row.
Macron also slammed the German Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer over her recent remarks, where she had said it's an "illusion" that the European Union can do without relying on the United States for security purposes. The French president dubbed Kramp-Karrenbauer's comment as "historical misinterpretation" and said he is sure the German Chancellor Angela Merkel doesn't subscribe to that view.
Angela Merkel, who is considered one of the most influential EU leaders, has been pushing to build an independent defence capability and stronger Euro for the past several years. She was one of the first EU leaders to call for less reliance on the US. Macron is also echoing a similar view, calling for independent foreign policy and departure from the EU's reliance on NATO for security, which he feels is a US-dominant organisation and seeks to put American interests first.