In the media

In the media, Hertie School experts comment on 60-year anniversary of Franco-German friendship

Cornelia Woll, Yann Wernert and Nils Redeker evaluate how the Elysée Treaty continues to shape European cooperation today.

Sunday, 22 January, marked the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Elysée Treaty. After years of war and rivalry, the agreement between France and Germany rang in a new era of friendship and solidarity. Across European media, Hertie School experts on French-German policy commented on the status quo of the relationship today.

“In historical comparison, the current relationship is very solid,” said President Cornelia Woll in Austrian newspaper Die Presse. However, because of reoccurring solo actions on common policy fields, such as energy and foreign affairs, lately, “there is indeed room for improvement,” she adds. Yet, within the European Union, the Franco-German engine had a duty to respond to the ideas of other countries, she said. “Germany and France alone are simply no longer enough. That is much clearer today than in the past.”

Yann Wernert, Policy Fellow at the Hertie School’s Jacques Delors Centre, said on France Inter: “Even though the two countries disagree on many things, they seek compromise and a common path on many complex and difficult policies.” A future challenge both countries needed to work on was a way ahead for European integration.

Jacques Delors Centre Deputy-Director Nils Redeker also commented on the differences in economic policy in an ARTE documentary, which features many high-ranking politicians.

Woll, Wernert and Redeker also shared their thoughts in other outlets: AFP, Les Echos (including in a second piece), Le Figaro, Deutschlandfunk, and Bruegel Podcast.

More about our experts