Biden, Macron discuss increased Indo-Pacific cooperation after sub spat

US President Joe Biden and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron discussed efforts “to enhance cooperation in the Indo-Pacific,” the White House said in the wake of a bilateral row.

Biden and Macron “reviewed ongoing efforts by their teams to support stability and security in the Sahel and to enhance cooperation in the Indo-Pacific,” the executive mansion said in a statement. “They also discussed efforts to enable a stronger and more capable European defense while ensuring complementarity with NATO.”

Biden and Macron will meet during the G20 summit later this month in Rome.

Their call comes after a US and UK decision to provide Australia with technology to build a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines roiled Paris, which saw $90 billion contract to sell Australia conventionally-powered submarines fall through. The deal led Paris to pull its ambassador from Washington.

The envoy ultimately returned after the US and France agreed to a joint statement in which they said the nuclear submarine deal “would have benefitted” from greater openness.

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