Aachen Treaty

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Aachen Treaty  (2019) 

The Treaty on Franco-German Cooperation and Integration (commonly known as Aachen Treaty) was concluded on 22 January 2019 by French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. This translation was published by the French diplomatic service: [1]

Treaty between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic on Franco-German Cooperation and Integration[edit]

The Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic,

Acknowledging the historic achievement of the reconciliation of the German and French peoples to which the Treaty between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic of 22 January 1963 on Franco-German cooperation has made an exceptional contribution and which has been the foundation for an unprecedented network of bilateral relations between their civil societies and public bodies at all levels,

Convinced that the time has come to take their bilateral relations to the next level and prepare for the challenges that the two countries and Europe face in the 21st century and aiming to further the convergence of their economies and social models, promote cultural diversity and bring their societies and citizens closer together,

Convinced that the close friendship between Germany and France has been decisive for a united, efficient, sovereign and strong European Union and continues to be an indispensable element,

Desiring to enhance their cooperation on European policy with the aim of promoting European unity, efficiency and cohesion while keeping this cooperation open to all Member States of the European Union,

Committed to the founding principles, rights, freedoms and values of the European Union, which uphold the rule of law throughout the Union and promote the same beyond its borders,

Desiring to work towards social and economic upward convergence in the European Union, strengthen mutual solidarity and foster the continuous improvement of living and working conditions in line with the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights, in the context of which particular attention is paid to women’s empowerment and gender equality,

Reaffirming the European Union’s commitment to an open and fair global market based on rules and reciprocal and non-discriminatory access and with high environmental and social standards,

Mindful of their rights and obligations under the Charter of the United Nations,

Sharing a firm commitment to an international order based on rules and multilateralism, with the United Nations at its heart,

Convinced that prosperity and security can only be guaranteed by taking immediate action to protect the climate and conserve biodiversity and ecosystems,

Acting in accordance with their national constitutional and legal requirements and within the legal framework of the European Union,

Acknowledging the important role played by the decentralised cooperation of municipalities, French départements, French régions, German Länder, the German Bundesrat and the French Sénat, as well as the cooperation between the Plenipotentiary of the Federal Republic of Germany for Cultural Affairs under the Treaty on Franco-German Cooperation and the competent ministers of the French Republic,

Acknowledging the essential role played by the cooperation between the German Bundestag and the French Assemblée nationale, notably through an inter-parliamentary agreement, as an important dimension of the close relations between their countries,

have agreed as follows:

Chapter 1 - European Affairs[edit]

Article 1[edit]

The two countries shall deepen their cooperation on European policy. They shall promote an effective and strong common foreign and security policy and shall strengthen and deepen the Economic and Monetary Union. They shall strive to complete the single market and work towards a competitive Union with a strong industrial base as a foundation for prosperity, promoting economic, fiscal and social convergence as well as sustainability in all its dimensions.

Article 2[edit]

The two countries shall hold regular consultations at all levels prior to major European meetings with the aim of establishing common positions and agreeing joint ministerial statements. They shall coordinate on the transposition of European law into national law.

Chapter 2 - Peace, Security and Development[edit]

Article 3[edit]

The two countries shall deepen their cooperation in matters of foreign policy, defence, external and internal security and development while striving to strengthen Europe’s ability to act autonomously. They shall consult one another with the objective of defining common positions on all important decision affecting their common interests and acting jointly whenever possible.

Article 4[edit]

(1) In light of their obligations under Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty of 4 April 1949 and of Article 42 (7) of the Treaty on European Union of 7 February 1992, as amended by the Treaty of Lisbon of 13 December 2007 amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, the two countries, convinced of the inseparable character of their security interests, shall increasingly converge their security and defence objectives and strategies, thus strengthening the systems of collective security of which they are part. They shall afford one another any means of assistance or aid within their power, including military force, in the event of an armed attack on their territories. The territorial scope referred to in the second sentence above is commensurate with the territorial scope laid down in Article 42 (7) of the Treaty on European Union.

(2) The two countries shall act jointly whenever possible, in accordance with their respective national rules, with the objective of maintaining peace and security. They shall continue to develop Europe’s efficiency, coherence and credibility in the military domain. In so doing, they undertake to strengthen Europe’s ability to act and to invest together in closing European capability gaps, thereby strengthening the European Union and the North Atlantic Alliance.

(3) The two countries undertake to continue to intensify the cooperation between their armed forces with a view to the establishment of a common culture and joint deployments. They shall intensify the development of common defence programmes and their expansion to include partners. In so doing, they intend to promote the competitiveness and consolidation of Europe’s defence industrial and technological base. They shall foster the closest possible cooperation between their defence industries on the basis of mutual trust. The two countries will develop a common approach on arms exports with regard to joint projects.

(4) The two countries shall establish the Franco-German Defence and Security Council as the political steering body for these mutual commitments. This Council will meet at the highest level on a regular basis.

Article 5[edit]

The two countries shall expand cooperation between their foreign ministries, including diplomatic missions and consular posts. They will exchange ranking personnel. They will instate exchanges between their Permanent Missions to the United Nations in New York, in particular between Security Council Teams, between the Permanent Missions to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the Permanent Representations to the European Union, as well as between the authorities of both countries responsible for coordinating European policy measures.

Article 6[edit]

With respect to internal security, the Governments of the two countries shall continue to strengthen their bilateral cooperation in the fight against terrorism and organised crime, as well as in the areas of justice, intelligence and police. They shall undertake joint training and deployment measures and establish a joint unit for stabilisation operations in third countries.

Article 7[edit]

The two countries shall endeavour to build an ever closer partnership between Europe and Africa by strengthening their cooperation in private sector development, regional integration, education and vocational training, gender equality and women’s empowerment, with the aim of improving social and economic prospects, sustainability and good governance, as well as crisis prevention and conflict management, including through peacekeeping, and managing post-conflict situations. The two countries shall establish an annual dialogue at the political level on international development policy to intensify the coordination of policy planning and implementation.

Article 8[edit]

(1) The two countries will cooperate closely in all organs of the United Nations within the framework of the Charter of the United Nations. They will coordinate their positions closely, including as part of wider efforts to coordinate the positions of the Member States of the European Union that are also members of the United Nations Security Council and in accordance with the positions and interests of the European Union. They will work together within the United Nations to advance the European Union’s positions and commitments with respect to global challenges and threats. They will do their utmost to ensure that the European Union adopts a uniform position in the relevant organs of the United Nations.

(2) The two countries undertake to continue their efforts to conclude intergovernmental negotiations on the reform of the United Nations Security Council. The admission of the Federal Republic of Germany as a permanent member of the Security Council is a priority of Franco-German diplomacy.

Chapter 3 - Culture, Education, Research and Mobility[edit]

Article 9[edit]

The two countries acknowledge the decisive role played by culture and the media in strengthening the Franco-German friendship. They are therefore determined to create a common space of freedom and opportunity for their peoples, as well as a common cultural and media space. They shall expand mobility and exchange programmes between their countries, especially for young people within the framework of the Franco-German Youth Office, and set quantifiable targets in these areas. In order to promote ever closer relations in all fields of cultural expression, including through integrated cultural institutes, they shall set up specific programmes and a digital platform, geared to young people in particular.

Article 10[edit]

The two countries shall bring their educational systems closer together by promoting mutual language learning, by developing strategies in line with their respective constitutional orders to increase the number of students studying the partner language, by promoting the mutual recognition of qualifications and by establishing Franco-German instruments of excellence for research, education and vocational training, as well as integrated Franco-German courses of study.

Article 11[edit]

The two countries are committed to interconnecting their education and research systems as well as their funding structures. They shall continue to develop the Franco-German University and encourage German and French universities to participate in networks of European universities.

Article 12[edit]

The two countries shall establish a Joint Citizens’ Fund designed to promote and support citizens’ initiatives and town twinning partnerships in order to bring their two peoples still closer together.

Chapter 4 - Regional and Cross-Border Cooperation[edit]

Article 13[edit]

(1) The two countries acknowledge the importance of cross-border cooperation between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic in order to foster closer ties between citizens as well as businesses on both sides of the border, including the essential role of local authorities and other local actors in this respect. They intend to facilitate the removal of obstacles in border regions with a view to implementing cross-border projects and to simplify the daily lives of people living in border regions.

(2) To this end, while respecting the respective constitutional rules of the two countries and within the framework of European Union law, the two countries shall provide local authorities in border regions and cross-border entities such as eurodistricts with appropriate competences, dedicated resources and accelerated procedures to overcome obstacles to the implementation of cross-border projects, in particular projects in the economic, social, environmental, health, energy and transport fields. If no other instrument allows them to overcome such obstacles, adapted legal and administrative provisions, including derogations, may also be provided for. In this case, it is incumbent upon both countries to introduce the relevant legislation.

(3) The two countries remain committed to safeguarding high standards in the areas of labour law, social security, health and safety, and environmental protection.

Article 14[edit]

The two countries shall establish a cross-border cooperation committee comprising such stakeholders as national, regional and local authorities, parliaments and cross-border entities such as eurodistricts and, where necessary, the euroregions concerned. This committee shall coordinate all aspects of cross-border observation between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic, draw up a common strategy for identifying priority projects, monitor on an ongoing basis difficulties encountered in border regions and elaborate proposals to address them, as well as analyse the impact of new legislation on border regions.

Article 15[edit]

Both countries are committed to the goal of bilingualism in border regions and shall support local authorities in developing and implementing appropriate strategies.

Article 16[edit]

The two countries will facilitate cross-border mobility by improving the existing digital and physical networks between them, including rail and road links. They will work closely together in the field of innovative, sustainable and universally accessible mobility to develop common approaches or standards between the two countries.

Article 17[edit]

The two countries shall encourage decentralised cooperation between local authorities that are not located in border regions. They are committed to supporting initiatives taken by these local authorities and implemented in the regions in question.

Chapter 5 - Sustainable Development, Climate, Environment and Economic Affairs[edit]

Article 18[edit]

The two countries shall work to strengthen the process of implementing multilateral agreements in the fields of sustainable development and global health, as well as climate and environmental protection, in particular the Paris Agreement of 12 December 2015 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development of the United Nations. They shall cooperate closely to this end to develop common approaches and policies, including creating incentives to transform their economies and promoting ambitious measures to combat climate change. They shall ensure that climate protection is taken into account in all policy areas, including through regular cross-sectoral exchanges between their Governments in key sectors.

Article 19[edit]

The two countries shall continue to promote the energy transition in all relevant sectors by strengthening their cooperation and the institutional framework for funding, preparing and implementing common projects, in particular in the areas of infrastructure, renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Article 20[edit]

(1) The two countries shall deepen the integration of their economies towards a Franco-German economic area with common rules. The Franco-German Financial and Economic Council shall promote bilateral legal harmonisation, including in the field of commercial law, and shall coordinate economic policy between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic on a regular basis in order to foster convergence between the two countries and improve the competitiveness of their economies.

(2) The two countries shall establish a Franco-German Council of Economic Experts, composed of ten independent experts in order to submit policy recommendations to their Governments.

Article 21[edit]

The two countries shall intensify their cooperation in the field of research and digital transformation, including in artificial intelligence and disruptive innovation. They will promote ethical guidelines for new technologies at the international level. They shall establish Franco-German initiatives to support innovations open to cooperation at European level. The two countries shall establish a coordination process and common funding mechanisms to promote joint research and innovation programmes.

Article 22[edit]

Stakeholders and relevant actors from the two countries shall be brought together in a Franco-German forum for the future in order to address transformational processes in their societies.

Chapter 6 - Organisation[edit]

Article 23[edit]

Meetings between the Governments of the two countries shall take place at least once a year, alternating between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic. Following the entry into force of this Treaty, the Franco-German Council of Ministers shall adopt a multiannual agenda of projects for Franco-German cooperation. The Commissioners for Franco-German Cooperation tasked with preparing these meetings shall monitor the implementation of this agenda and shall report back to the Council of Ministers.

Article 24[edit]

At least once per quarter, a member of the Government of one of the two countries shall attenda cabinet meeting of the other country on a rotating basis.

Article 25[edit]

The councils, structures and instruments of Franco-German cooperation shall be subject to periodic review and, as the case may be, shall be adapted without delay in accordance with the jointly agreed objectives. The first review shall take place within the first six months of the entry into force of this Treaty and shall propose any necessary amendments. The Commissioners for Franco-German Cooperation shall assess the progress made on a regular basis. They shall inform the prliaments and the Franco-German Council of Ministers as to the overall progress made in the area of Franco-German cooperation.

Article 26[edit]

Representatives of the German Länder and French régions and of the cross-border cooperation committee may be invited to attend meetings of the Franco-German Council of Ministers.

Chapter 7 - Final Provisions[edit]

Article 27[edit]

This Treaty shall supplement the Treaty between the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic of 22 January 1963 on Franco-German Cooperation within the meaning of paragraph 4 of the Final Provisions of that Treaty.

Article 28[edit]

The two countries shall inform each other via diplomatic channels as to the fulfilment of the necessary national requirements for the entry into force of this Treaty. This Treaty shall enter into force on the day following the date of receipt of the last notification.


Done at Aachen on 22 January 2019 in duplicate in the German and French languages, both texts being equally authentic.


For the Federal Republic of Germany

Angela Merkel[1]

For the French Republic

Emmanuel Macron[2]

Notes[edit]

  1. Wikipedia: Angela Merkel
  2. Wikipedia: Emmanuel Macron

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