Diamond Wedding or rather alone than in bad company ? 60 Years of the Elysée

By Frédérique Genton, Artelatum, 22/01/2023

Two generations after the signing of the treaty, the balance is rather mixed. Young
people in our two countries are worried about their future. 
In order to restore the confidence of the younger generations, declarations of intent,
more or less followed by effects, are no longer enough.

A stronger Europe also depends on the ability of the men and women of our two
countries to make the strengths of our systems and markets work in synergy, while
helping each other to overcome their respective weaknesses.
The solution could be to go beyond this incomparable cultural pedestal that the
Élysée Treaty represented at the beginning of the glorious 30 years and the Federal
Republic of Germany. What remains to be done is certainly a concrete acceleration
through the Treaty of Aachen:

  • in the field of health in a broader sense (access to cross-border healthcare,
    university medical research, e-health in all its forms)
  • in relation to climate in a broader sense (energy, sustainability and mobility
  • and finally in terms of politics: speeding up the process of integrated Franco-
    German and European defence, in particular by finding solutions for the
    efficient and rapid production of common military equipment, such as Airbus.

The atmosphere at this birthday party is not one of confetti throwing, and the
partners are tempted to withdraw.
Nevertheless if there is reason for concern, there is also reason for joy. 
In terms of economic relations, Germany remains France's main trading partner with
a volume of business (13.9% of trade) that could grow even further if companies
manage to limit the risks of failure in setting up in France or in Germany for French
Investments between Germany and France remain numerous and the impact of the
Covid crisis was rather positive in that respect, as Germany will be the largest
investor in France by 2021.

Another hope: #GermanTech and #FrenchTech as well as a growing number of
German SMEs. They approach the step into the partner country without remorse, but
conscientiously prepare for the cultural differences in order to be more successful
Adapting to the market, integrating cultural differences in order to turn
mergers and acquisitions into European market leaders is more important than
The time has definitely come to give the Franco-German couple, cement of the
construction of Europe necessary impetus by trusting in the pragmatism of the new
generations and companies. 
In the end, it is the ability of men and women to develop our mindsets and hence our
economies that will make the difference.

The challenge remains to approach together, without any cultural preconceptions or
inward-looking attitudes, all the potential for cooperation, by integrating the

challenges and risks, but above all by being aware of the additional chances and
opportunities that they bring.
In this sense, we will soon be sharing best practices from German and French
companies that have succeeded in making a name for themselves on the European
and international markets.
Happy Diamond Wedding to the Franco-German couple. Let's prepare together
for an even happier Platinum Wedding in 2033!

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