Centre news

60 Years Post Élysée, the Franco-German partnership remains at the core of our work

Credits: MEAE

In the spirit of our namesake, Jacques Delors, our Centre works every day to foster further Franco-German cooperation and strengthen relations across the Rhine. 

“The Franco-German friendship is rich in memories and gestures that are at once important and symbolic, and that characterise the exceptional nature of the relationship between our two countries,” said Jacques Delors in 1998. One such gesture is the Élysée Treaty, signed by French President Charles de Gaulle and German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer on 22 January 1963, marking the beginning of a new era of Franco-German relations.  

In the sixty years since, the Franco-German partnership has remained at the core of the European project. The importance of this Union led to the founding of our Centre in 2014 and continues to be at the heart of our work today. This year, on the 60th anniversary of the Treaty, members of our Centre are involved in a variety of projects to further Franco-German closeness and highlight the “exceptional nature of the relationship” which Delors spoke on in 1998.  

In a joint event with our sister organisation in Paris, the Jacques Delors Institute, we are hosting a Franco-German discussion of energy economics on 23 January, in which young economists and senior policy experts will meet to discuss the joint challenges facing us in the coming months including replacing Russian energy, deploying renewables, and reforming the electricity market. This event aims to stimulate Franco-German dialogues on the European energy market.  

As announced on 23 January, our Policy Fellow Thu Nguyen is part of a Franco-German working group on EU institutional reforms, initiated by the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and by the German Federal Office. This working group will be, during the coming months, working on proposals on how to strengthen the EU‘s functioning in the future.  

The Franco-German partnership was also highlighted in a recent ARTE documentary, in which our Advisory Board member Pascal Lamy and Deputy Director Nils Redeker provided expert insight to the current challenges facing both countries and the development of the Franco-German engine overtime.  

In addition, our Pariser Platz Dialogue project turned four this year. This project has brought together French and German decision-makers for events multiple times per year in which participants discuss a wide variety of challenges and opportunities for exchange. Planning for the next event is already underway—we cannot wait to host you in Berlin again soon.  

Sixty years after the Élysée Treaty, the Franco-German partnership has remained crucial to the work that we do every day. In the coming months and years, we are looking forward to further cooperation with our sister organisations in Paris and Brussels, more Pariser Platz Dialogue events, new joint policy analysis, and a furthering of the bilateral dialogue, as Jacques Delors once said, “Franco-German relations constitute their own value, irreplaceable for each of our two peoples”.