INTERNATIONAL – Talking about the strategy to adopt towards oil-producing countries in front of the cameras, a good idea? Emmanuel Macron may have the answer. This Monday, June 27, on the sidelines of the G7 in Germany, the Head of State called on the american president while he was discussing with an adviser.
Images filmed by BFMTV show Joe Biden chatting with Jake Sullivan, his national security adviser. Emmanuel Macron, in the background, approaches. “Joe! Mr. President!”, the apostrophe there in English.
“Mr. President, excuse me for interrupting you…”, he begins, still in English, before explaining the reason for the inconvenience. “I made the decision to call the president of the United Arab Emirates to ask him to increase production,” he explains, ignoring the cameras and microphones.
“Maybe we should discuss it inside”
However, the subject is sensitive. The oil embargo against Moscow after the invasion of Ukraine has sent prices skyrocketing and Westerners are urging OPEC and OPEC+ countries – 23 countries that produce half of the world’s oil – to further increase their production to relieve pressure at the pump.
After his call to Mohammed ben Zayed, Emmanuel Macron reports the content of their exchanges with Joe Biden: “[Le pays] is at its maximum [de production de pétrole], that’s what he claims, that’s all he can do. Then he told me that the Saudis could increase theirs […]. Finally, regarding Russian oil, he told me that we have to make sure that India…”
Emmanuel Macron does not have time to finish his sentence, interrupted for an unknown reason. At the end of the footage, posted by an account of the anti-Biden American Republican Party, as the French president seems to want to continue the conversation, we hear an adviser – presumably Jack Sullivan – interrupt him again: “Maybe that we should discuss it inside.” “OK, OK”, responds Emmanuel Macron.
The United Arab Emirates reacts
Later, in a statement, the Emirati Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, Souhail bin Mohammed Al-Mazrouei confirmed that “the production of the Emirates (was) at a level close to the maximum capacity currently planned within the framework of the ‘OPEC+, or 3168 million barrels per day’.
Discovering that the sequence was looping on social networks, he then dotted the “i” on Twitter. “In light of recent media reports, I would like to clarify that the UAE is producing close to our maximum production capacity based on its current OPEC+ baseline production to which the UAE has committed until ‘at the end of the agreement,’ he reiterated.
Internet users make the parallel with “The Office”
On social networks, the sequence generated thousands of shares. While some users condemn Emmanuel Macron’s intervention, several others have mocked it, notably drawing a parallel with a serial character. “In fact, Macron is Michael Scott from The Officeexcept that he is president”, writes one of them in reference to the American sitcom featuring a particularly incompetent corporate executive. “We live in The Office and you want us to be okay”, worries another.
Others thought they recognized Pep Guardiola, current Manchester City coach, mocked for his attraction to the camera lenses.
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