Germany could scrap a £90billion fighter project with France and join a rival programme with the UK instead.
Ahead of the deal, the German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is understood to be in talks on lifting their veto on a delivery of Eurofighter Typhoon jets in Saudi Arabia.
The move would bolster relations with Britain even further, as the UK considers the Middle Eastern country strategically important.
If Germany and the UK were to team up, it would likely intensify a rift between Berlin and Paris, with both nations already hold contrasting opinions on issues from air defence to diplomatic protocol.
Scholz is reported to be having doubts about the project
It would also be another humiliation for Macron, who was snubbed in 2021 by Australia, who abandoned a submarine deal with the French in favour for working with the US.
Germany is currently involved with the Future Combat Air System (FCAS), a Franco-German-Spanish programme which aims to construct the next generation of air power.
It has been dubbed by some analysts as the most important defence project in the continent.
The main aim of the project is to use a single platform to digitally interweave a new brand of stealth fighter with drones, automated mini-fighter jets, older combat aircraft and naval or ground-based assets.
However, Scholz – who has already contributed €40billion to the project – is said to be having doubts.
The Chancellor is worried that the FCAS will fail to materialise despite the money poured into it, The Times has reported.
The fighter jet is scheduled to be ready by 2035 – five years before the FCAS is set to enter the market.
It will form the foundation of a wider British-Italian-Japanese aerospace alliance.
Scholz sees no point in FCAS competing with the Tempest and wants the two groups to merge, or failing that, to abandon the project with France and Germany and join forces with the UK.
Relations between France and Germany have been souring on several different policies.
France has been hostile Scholz’ “Sky Shield” project, as it views the project as a rival to its own research and development in missile defence procurement.
However, another source has said that Scholz was offended that Rishi Sunak has not yet flown to Berlin to visit him to discuss a potential partnership.
French Defence Minister Florence Parly, German Defence Minister Anngret Kramp-Karrenbaeur, and Spanish Spanish Junior Defence Minister Angel Olivares Ramirez sign contracts for a fighter jet deal
Alongside this, the UK and Germany are at loggerheads over the sale of Eurofighter jets to Saudi Arabia, which Berlin has vetoed due to the Middle Eastern country’s human rights record.
The UK regards Saudi Arabia as a valuable partner to stabilise the Middle East.
The Times reported that Sunak and James Cleverly were in the midst of a lobbying campaign to change Scholz to lift the veto.
If Germany were to snub France, it would echo Australia’s decision to abandon a huge submarine deal with Paris in 2021.
Canberra chose a deal with the US instead, which was working on nuclear powered submarines.
Paris described the snub as a “stab in the back”.
“We had established a relationship of trust with Australia, this trust has been betrayed,” the French foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian said.
“This alliance we have only just been made aware and we weren’t even consulted,” he said. “As high representative for security, I was not aware and I assume that an agreement of such a nature wasn’t just brought together overnight. I think it would have been worked on for quite a while.”