Poland should have stronger role in EU: German FM

Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has expressed a view that in the wake of Brexit, Poland, Spain, and Italy should play a more important role and have more responsibility in decision-making within the European Union.

“The German-French tandem cannot replace the E3 group [Germany, France, the UK],” said Heiko Maas, Germany’s FM at a conference of German ambassadors when talking about the consequences of Brexit.

“Europe is too big for that. We also know that some look at our close cooperation with our French friends with distrust. Finally, differences of interests in Europe are too large for us to be able to deal with them on our own,” Mr Maas added.

According to the German Foreign Minister, a solution to this would be the greater involvement of Spain and Italy in the south, and Poland in the east of the EU.

“I know this will not be easy. However, the fact that the current governments in Italy and Poland are taking a different course in European politics should not mean excluding them from responsibility… We are all responsible for something greater - the future of the European Union,” Heiko Maas said.

The German official also said that the reason behind the EU’s recent involvement in the Three Seas Initiative, is the need to rebuild trust within the EU, as earlier Western European states opposed the idea.

The rule of law remains a key factor for the Union, according to Mr Maas, who also announced that during Germany’s EU presidency in 2020, a new rule of law control system will be introduced, focusing on all member states.