PARIS (Reuters) - France wants Britain to remain in the European Union, President Francois Hollande said on Thursday after talks with UK Prime Minister David Cameron, who insisted the status quo in Europe was “not good enough”.
“France wants the UK to remain in the European Union,” Hollande said at a joint news conference with Cameron in Paris. “We think it’s in the interest of Europe and in the interest of the United Kingdom to be together but the people must always be respected.”
Cameron said that his priority was to reform the EU to make it more competitive and address the concerns of the British people.
“The status quo is not good enough,” he said. “I believe there are changes we can make that will benefit not just Britain, but the rest of Europe, too.”
He added: “We have different priorities but we share a common objective, which is to find solutions to these problems and what matters is that the European Union and its 28 members are flexible and imaginative enough to respond to these issues and to work together to find answers that will make the European Union more successful.”
Cameron was starting a two-day European tour to try to charm EU leaders into backing his reform drive, something he has promised to complete before giving Britons an EU membership in-out referendum by the end of 2017.
Reporting by Ingrid Melander; Editing by James Regan