At a press conference with the Prime Minister earlier today, Merkel vowed to approach May's Brexit plan in "the spirit of friendship".
"We are looking forward to interesting discussions, but we will also have these discussions inspired by the spirit of friendship and the wish to have good relations in the future," she said.
"I can only say that even after Britain has left the EU, we want to have as close a relationship with Britain as possible – which I think is true also for the other European member states," she continued.
"We remain Europeans although we may not all then be members of the EU.
"What we want to do now is bring the negotiating process forward. We as the 27 under the leadership of Jean-Claude Juncker and Michel Barnier, will then form an opinion and later on table a common response to those proposals. It's a good thing that we have proposals on the table."
The comments will come as a much needed boost after the PM's Brexit plan triggered a crisis in her government.
Foreign secretary Boris Johnson left his post over the proposals a day after David Davis resigned as Brexit secretary on Sunday night.