Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel issued the following statement today (13 September) after the speech by the President of the European Commission, Jean‑Claude Juncker:
I welcome the passionate and pioneering speech by Jean‑Claude Juncker.
It expresses precisely what the Commission’s role in the process of European integration should be – always looking ahead, being a pioneer of the European idea and never giving up in the search for ideas and suggestions on how we can foster our shared Europe, make it more resilient to crises and enhance it as a player with a global role.
Now is the time to set the course for a good future for Europe. There are many good suggestions on developing the European Union further. In Emmanuel Macron, a dedicated reformer is leading France. We have overcome the acute crises in Europe. Jean‑Claude Juncker’s inspiring ideas give us a great deal of input for further discussions and debates. In Germany, too, we need a new Federal Government that wants to develop Europe further with courage and confidence.
Jean‑Claude Juncker has indicated the right path for the cohesion of our continent – more integration, more solidarity, more freedom, more justice, more democracy and more rule of law. We absolutely cannot allow the European Union to be split into East and West, North and South, and rich and poor. We all fare better with the European Union. Only together are we strong and able to assert our values and interests in the world.
Europe is a community with a shared destiny and values.
The EU will only be a strong player internationally with a voice that is heard in the world if we succeed in strengthening its internal cohesion once again. That is a task for us all, including us Germans. We, too, must be willing to compromise, to think of Europe as a whole and to invest even more in the common European project.