Sunday

28th May 2017

Focus

EU and China to fight financial crisis

  • EU-China co-operation is crucial to solving current financial problems, said Mr Barroso (Photo: EUobserver)

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao have pledged to co-operate on tackling online piracy, climate change and the financial crisis, with a new EU-China summit envisaged for April.

"It is a strategic priority of the Chinese government to develop relations with the EU and we are firm and steadfast in that commitment," said Mr Wen, following a meeting between the two sides in Brussels on Friday (30 January).

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

The Chinese premier announced the two sides had agreed to hold high-level trade and economy talks in April and confirmed that a new summit date would be shortly agreed.

Beijing cancelled a summit scheduled between the two sides late last year in protest at France – then holding the EU presidency – receiving Tibet's exiled leader, the Dalai Lama.

Friday's meeting resulted in the signing of nine co-operation agreements.

Chief amongst these from a European perspective is an agreement to strengthen protection of intellectual property rights, an issue of particular importance to EU businesses currently suffering high levels of piracy in China.

Morning discussions were dominated by finding solutions to the current financial crisis.

"We have agreed to increase our dialogue on macroeconomic issues," said Mr Barroso, and he welcomed China's involvement in the G20 talks being held on 2 April in London.

Asked what action he intended to take to help volatility in the foreign exchange markets, Mr Wen said China would continue to follow its currency strategy as laid out in its 2005 reform.

"Our policy in this reform is to have a multi-based managed and floating exchange rate regime with reference to a basket of currencies," he said.

"Since the reform launched in 2005 the renminbi has appreciated 20 percent against the US dollar in actual terms. We believe maintaining the stability of the Chinese currency …will play a positive role in stabilizing international finance and economy," he continued.

The two sides will also discuss climate change on Friday.

"Europe and China can work together to achieve success at the Copenhagen summit later this year," said Mr Barroso, referring to international talks in December on an environment agreement for post 2012.

As protests took place outside the commission's main building in Brussels, Mr Barroso confirmed the two sides had discussed the issues of human rights and Tibet, saying they had held "frank and open discussions based on mutual respect."

"With reform and opening up in the last three decades, China is open on many major issues," said Mr Wen.

"We always believe in mutual respect and complete equality and I believe on that basis anything can be discussed," he continued.

China urges Germany and France to solve euro-crisis

Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao on Thursday offered vague promises to buy bonds from troubled euro-countries, but said that it is ultimately up to Germany and France to solve the crisis.

MEPs and China mark change in relationship

Members of the five big political groups in the European Parliament have met with members of the one big political group in the National People's Congress of China, in what has been described as a “changing” and "very friendly" climate.

Column / Brexit Briefing

Ukip's last electoral stand

Nigel Farage's anti-EU party is unlikely to win any seats at the 8 June elections. After the loss of his charismatic leadership, the party is just a rag-tag of third raters.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNICEFChild Alert on Myanmar: Fruits of Rapid Development yet to Reach Remote Regions
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersBecome an Explorer - 'Traces of Nordic' Seeking Storytellers Around the World
  3. Malta EU 2017Closer Cooperation and Reinforced Solidarity to Ensure Security of Gas Supply
  4. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceHigh-Intensity Interval Training Is Therapeutic Option for Type 2 Diabetes
  5. Dialogue Platform"The West Must Help Turkey Return to a Democratic Path" a Call by Fethullah Gulen
  6. ILGA-EuropeRainbow Europe 2017 Is Live - Which Countries Are Leading on LGBTI Equality?
  7. Centre Maurits CoppietersWhen You Invest in a Refugee Woman You Help the Whole Community
  8. Eurogroup for AnimalsECJ Ruling: Member States Given No Say on Wildlife Protection In Trade
  9. European Heart NetworkCall for Urgent Adoption of EU-Wide Nutrient Profiles for Nutrition & Health Claims
  10. Counter BalanceInvestment Plan for Europe More Climate Friendly but European Parliament Shows Little Ambition
  11. Mission of China to the EUPresident Xi: China's Belt and Road Initiative Benefits People Around the World
  12. Malta EU 2017EU Strengthens Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Firearms