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World 13.5.2017 05:24 pm

Poland counting on ‘reset’ with France under Macron

(FILES) This file photo taken on February 21, 2017 shows French presidential election candidate for the En Marche ! movement Emmanuel Macron, arriving outside 10 Downing Street in central London, ahead of his meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May.

Incoming French President Emmanuel Macron will hold a "tough" line during Brexit negotiations but will not seek to "punish" Britain, his chief economic adviser said on May 8, 2017. Macron, who campaigned on a pro-EU platform, has previously called Brexit a "crime" and said that Britain should continue paying into the EU budget if it wants access to the European single market. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS

(FILES) This file photo taken on February 21, 2017 shows French presidential election candidate for the En Marche ! movement Emmanuel Macron, arriving outside 10 Downing Street in central London, ahead of his meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May. Incoming French President Emmanuel Macron will hold a "tough" line during Brexit negotiations but will not seek to "punish" Britain, his chief economic adviser said on May 8, 2017. Macron, who campaigned on a pro-EU platform, has previously called Brexit a "crime" and said that Britain should continue paying into the EU budget if it wants access to the European single market. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS

Poland’s President Andrzej Duda says the French president-elect told him he wanted ‘good’ bilateral ties with Warsaw.

Poland’s president on Saturday said he wants a “reset” in ties with France under President-elect Emmanuel Macron, which soured last year when Warsaw abruptly dropped a multi-billion euro deal with a French aeronautics firm.

“I’m counting on France’s new presidency to make… a reset possible,” Poland’s President Andrzej Duda said, quoted by the Polish PAP news agency after a telephone conversation with Macron.

Duda said Macron told him he wanted “good” bilateral ties, adding that they agreed to meet during the May 25 NATO summit in Brussels.

Macron drew ire in Warsaw for campaigning on a promise that if elected, he would push for EU sanctions against Poland over alleged rule of law violations by its right-wing government.

As the outsourcing of jobs from a factory based in his hometown to Poland became a hot campaign issue, Macron also accused Poles of so-called “social dumping”, or using lower labour costs to draw foreign investors.

Relations between Warsaw and Paris first soured last October after the Poles called off negotiations with France’s Airbus to buy 50 of its Caracal helicopters for several billion euros (dollars).

Duda also said he agreed to Macron’s proposal for a meeting of the so-called “Weimar Triangle” group comprising France, German and Poland that last met in 2011 under Poland’s previous liberal government.

Eurozone heavyweights France and Germany are pushing for a “multi-speed” EU as the bloc prepares for Brexit.

Poland and other younger eastern members still outside the eurozone oppose it, worried that they could be left behind.

© Agence France-Presse

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