French President Emmanuel Macron, accompanied by his wife Brigitte Macron, arrived in Athens on Thursday for a two-day official visit during which he is expected to lend his support to Greece and outline his vision for a more democratic Europe.
Earlier, in an interview with Greek daily Kathimerini, the French president sent a message of support saying that he is optimistic about Greece’s future as a country for investments and entrepreneurship.
See also: Macron to Urge Renewal of EU Democracy from Pnyx in Athens
“The positive signs are multiplying: growth is returning, investments are growing, and unemployment is dropping”, Macron told Kathimerini.
“Just as France stood at its side during the crisis, France will support Greece in this new beginning”, he added.
The Greek government is capitalizing on the visit by Macron, who will be accompanied by French businessmen who are looking for potential investments in Greece.
Athens considers France to be an important ally in its efforts to ease Germany’s pressure for more austerity in Greece’s bailout program.
Government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said that Macron’s visit marks Greece’s passing to the next day that leads to the exit from the crisis.
On Thursday afternoon Macron will meet President of the Republic Prokopis Pavlopoulos and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
Early in the evening Macron and his wife will go to the Pnyx where Tsipras and the French president will speak about the future of Europe.
This will be followed by an official dinner for the French president and his wife hosted by President Pavlopoulos.