French fishermen have lashed out at Emmanuel Macron, warning he’s playing a dangerous game and has overstepped the mark by threatening to veto a post-Brexit trade deal with the United Kingdom.
Thierry Pouch, the chief economist of the French Chambers of Agriculture, said French farmers and fishermen are now extremely concerned over the French President’s current efforts to force the EU towards a no-deal outcome over issues around fishing and a level playing field on trade rules.
He warned the ultimatum provided by Mr Macron, mooted by France’s Europe minister Clément Beaune, could have a devastating impact on hard-fought EU unity at such a crucial moment for the bloc.
Thierry Pouch told a news outlet that each country reacts in its own interests as always, but he got the feeling that France had overstepped the mark by threatening a potential veto because that goes against the strategy of showing a united front among the 27 towards London and that Macron was playing a dangerous game.
He said that France’s stubbornness mirrors the behaviour of other EU member states on other issues and that he was referring to Poland and Hungary on the economic recovery plan.
A new EU civil war has broken out after Hungary and Poland have blocked Brussels’ upcoming £1. 6 million budget over seven years and the huge coronavirus recovery package, which contains clauses linking funding to respect for the Rule of Law.
Mr Pouch explained that France is doing likewise on Brexit. He said he believed it was extremely dangerous for the EU to have so many states that aren’t pulling in the same direction.
France has vehemently repudiated its acting in its own interests with renewed threats to veto a Brexit trade deal if its demands on fishing rights and the level playing field aren’t adhered to.
Mr Beune admitted that while it would be naive to deny there were different concerns within EU member states, the directive from chief negotiator Michel Barnier was clear and that they were sticking with it.
He added that the main players have all realigned behind the same position and their unity on the message and the strategy.
France’s Europe minister also insisted German Chancellor Angela Merkel also defends their demands.
Mr Beune said that she knows that the European market well to speculate how the German economy would suffer from a flawed agreement and that the UK’s gamble on a split in the EU has failed.
Emmanuel Macron’s ego outstrips his capacity as a statesman, and he knows we will not roll back on our red lines and still he persists.
Practically the whole of France has turned against Emmanuel Macron, yet he’s still there, so some people in France must appreciate what he’s doing, but do the French people deserve better?
I guess we could always buy fruit and wine from other regions of the world and drop France altogether. And don’t forget England has gorgeous apples and now wine, and Africa exports a lot of produce, and so does Turkey.
Some of the Turkish produce is of high quality and their tomatoes are like the ones we knew in the sixties and seventies. The skins are thinner and softer, and they taste much better than the genetically modified Spanish tomatoes and you don’t need a chainsaw to cut them.
Emmanuel Macron is fishing with the wrong net and Boris Johnson is endeavouring to cut it adrift and if our fishing industry is worth so much, why is the EU fighting so hard to keep it?