Since President François Hollande’s election in May 2012, France and the USA have maintained a high-quality dialogue based on confidence.
President Obama was one of the first foreign Heads of State to call President Hollande to congratulate him. The President of the French Republic was received at the White House before the G8 Summit in Camp David (18-19 May 2012) and the NATO Summit in Chicago (20-21 May 2012), and he conducted a State visit to the United States of America in 2014 (10-12 February), which was the first by a French president in 18 years. The visit was marked by powerful mutual gestures of friendship and esteem.
President Obama has made several visits to France since his election in 2008. He attended the G8 Summit in Deauville on 27 and 28 May 2011. In 2009, he attended the NATO Summit in Strasbourg and Baden-Baden and the commemoration of the 65th anniversary of the Normandy Landings on 6 June. He also attended the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Landings on 6 June 2014. American Vice President Joe Biden met President Hollande in Paris on 4 February 2013.
The American authorities were among the first to show solidarity and offer assistance after the terrorist attacks in January 2015. President Obama made the exceptional gesture of travelling to the French Embassy in Washington on 11 January to sign the book of condolences.
The current American Secretary of State, Mr John Kerry and French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Mr Laurent Fabius are in frequent contact.
The prevailing atmosphere of confidence between France and the United States allows us to conduct fruitful dialogue on both regional issues (Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, renewal of NATO, Africa) and global issues (the economy, nuclear energy, and coordinating responses to the financial crisis). President Obama’s proactive approach to combating climate change makes the USA a major interlocutor ahead of COP21, which will be hosted by France in December.
At parliamentary level, a friendship group – the French Caucus, created in Congress in 2003 and composed of around one hundred members – is a key instrument of France-USA relations. Similarly, in France there is a large France-USA Inter-parliamentary Friendship Group.
As of 31 December 2014, around 135,000 French nationals were registered in France’s 10 consulates general in the USA (the total French community in the USA is estimated at more than 300,000).