German Chancellor Angela Merkel and France’s new President Emmanuel Macron vowed to give a new impetus to Europe, saying they were ready to even change EU treaties if necessary.

In keeping with tradition, the French President paid a visit to Merkel on his first trip abroad after taking office, seeking to reinvigorate the Franco-German relationship and the troubled European project that it underpins.

With Germany’s economy, Europe’s largest, outperforming that of France, the traditional Franco-German motor at the heart of the EU project has begun to misfire.

Merkel and macron want to kick-start ties with an alliance some German media have dubbed “Merkron”.

Macron also urged a “historic reconstruction” of Europe in order to battle a surge of populism, after defeating far-right leader Marine Le Pen.