• Emmanuel Macron, New French President

Emmanuel Macron, New French President (Photo : Getty Images)

Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the recently concluded French presidential election has put a stopper to the rising sentiment of right-wing nationalism in Europe. This turnout especially bodes well for China and Sino-French ties in general, China Daily reported.

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The independent centrist won against Marine Le Pen of the French National Front, gaining 66 percent of the poll votes.

However, the abstention rate for this year’s election was recorded at about 25 percent, the highest in the past hundred years.

Meanwhile, blank or spoiled ballots were turned in by over 11 percent of voters who weren’t swayed by either Macron or Le Pen.

Labeled as the dark horse of the presidential campaign, Macron countered Le Pen’s nationalist agenda by promoting openness, free flow of people and vowing to fight extremism.

His win is also a stunning change from the recent populist victories, most evident in the election of Donald Trump as the United States’ president and the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union.

Macron is in for a challenge, however, as there are darker times ahead of France. The country has fallen prey to various terrorist attacks in the past two years, with over 230 people dead. France is also currently suffering from deep social divisions and unemployment among young professionals, among other issues.

Still, it’s a great victory for China, who has been cultivating healthy relations with France in the recent years.

The two countries have the shared view of maintaining global peace, order and development. Furthermore, with China now a leading figure for globalization, Macron’s like-minded policies will definitely help the former’s fight for free trade.

Macron has previously said that China can also be a partner in fighting terrorism and climate change. President Xi Jinping sent a message of congratulations to Macron, saying that with him leading France, the two countries will “move the strategic Sino-French partnership to a higher level.”