French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet in Paris, just hours after Hollande said the EU can't "dictate" reforms to France. They hope to come up with new ideas to boost European industry but expectations the meeting will produce concrete measures are not high.
But Hollande managed to ruffle Merkel's feathers ahead of the meeting in Paris.
He told reporters that the EU can't "dictate" reforms to France.
It comes after France received recommendations from the European Commission, urging Hollande to rein in public spending, revamp pensions and cut labour costs in return for a two-year reprieve on budget deficit cuts.
French officials mostly welcomed the recommendations as being in line with reform plans already sent to Brussels.
But Hollande says the Commission must not overstep its mark.
And that's not going to please Merkel.
There are growing concerns in the EU economic powerhouse, that France is slipping deeper into decline.
The meeting is intended to flesh out a proposal on greater euro zone cooperation ahead of next month's EU summit.
Few details have yet to emerge on the plans, and officials on both sides have played down expectations of any major European policy initiative before Germany's September election where Merkel will seek to win a new term.