Macron begins US visit with criticism of Biden-driven subsidies

Emmanuel
Emmanuel Macron, President of France – ALEXIS SCIARD / ZUMA PRESS / CONTACTOPHOTO

French President Emmanuel Macron has kicked off his state visit to the United States with some unusual criticism of U.S. policy on subsidies, asserting that the measures promoted by his counterpart Joe Biden favor imbalance.

The Inflation Reduction Act and another reform promoted by Biden include investment programs that encourage, for example, semiconductor production. «They are very good for the U.S. economy, but they have not been properly coordinated with the European economies,» Macron told ABC News.

The criticism itself is not new, since other members of the French government have already criticized U.S. economic policies, but the context is striking, insofar as Biden has offered Macron the first state visit of his administration.

The visit began with an official reception at the White House, including an exchange of gifts and prior to a gala dinner with which the two leaders wanted to claim themselves as allies in a global context marked by the challenges arising from other powers such as Russia and China.

Macron, who with this one makes two state visits to the United States — the first was with Donald Trump at the White House — has said he felt «honored and moved» by the reception. «Our democracies on both sides of the ocean share the same doubt,» he said in brief remarks at the start of the working day.

Asked by a reporter, Biden gave a clear reason for choosing Macron for his first major reception: «Because he is my friend.»

CRITICISM OF TRUMP AND MUSK On another note, Macron has also criticized former President Trump from the United States, noting that the questioning of the election results «in one of the largest and oldest democracies in the world» can mean «the beginning of the end of democracy».

Thus, he has pointed out in his televised interview that many Democrats may have been dissatisfied with the results of the 2016 elections, which propelled Trump to the White House. «Did they invade the Capitol? No,» he has then blurted out.

The Gallic leader has also addressed the new owner of Twitter, Elon Musk, and has regretted that he has relaxed control of content on the social network. «I think it’s a big problem,» he said in his television interview.

In this sense, he has advocated adding «responsibilities and limits» to freedom of expression, for example on issues such as racism or incitement to violence.