Macron and May's new border agreement
France and Britain plan to strengthen the protection of their joint border. Macron and May agreed on Thursday that London would pay 50 million euros more than it has done so far to Paris in order to ensure that efforts to prevent refugees from crossing the English Channel are more effective. The agreement supplements the Treaty of Le Touquet which was first signed in 2003. For commentators it underlines the close relations between the two countries.
France showing its good will
Although President Macron promised that the Treaty of Le Touquet would be renegotiated he apparently wasn't aiming for a radical break, writes the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung:
“It looks like the British will pay more and have to take in more migrants. There is unlikely to be any change in the basic principle of transferring the British border to French territory. In London, this should be read as a gesture of good will. Despite Brexit Paris is not calling into question its relations with London, which are also close on defence policy. With this kind of pragmatism the Brexit talks could be a lot further on than they are now.”
A modernday Entente Cordiale
So this is what the "Entente Cordiale" looks like in the Brexit era, La Stampa comments with amazement:
“May wants to show that she still has a lot to offer, to France - and Europe - and is hoping to destabilise the Franco-German axis. ... Macron wants to maintain the good relations with the UK, France's fifth biggest trading partner and Europe's other major military power. ... In celebration of the day he announced that France would lend Britain the famous Bayeux Tapestry, which depicts the Battle of Hastings and hasn't left France in almost a thousand years. The promise to preserve the 'Entente Cordiale' after Brexit is therefore being underpinned with a tapestry that depicts the Norman Conquest, a crushing victory for the French on English soil. This irony did not go unnoticed on the other side of the English Channel.”