Monday

23rd Oct 2017

China: 'You can't depend on us alone to rescue Greece'

  • China would buy euro-bonds, if they were to be issued (Photo: dolmansaxlil)

A 'regular' phone call between European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso and Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao on Friday morning (2 September) was aimed at reassuring markets that China will continue to support the ailing eurozone.

Flagging up the phone call in a regular press briefing, commission spokesman Alejandro Ulzurrun said that it focused on the current measures being taken to consolidate the eurozone and on the upcoming EU-China summit on 25 October.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

"Wen expressed his support for the actions under way in Europe," Ulzurrun said, without going into details.

Since the beginning of the euro-debt crisis, China has propped up troubled countries such as Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy through bond purchases. But as the July deal on a new Greek bail-out has opened the possibility of investors taking a 'voluntary' haircut on their investments, ratings agencies have lowered their expectations for other troubled eurozone countries, including Italy and Spain, the bloc's third and fourth largest economies, for fear that they may also face a 'partial' default.

Speaking to the EUobserver, Chinese embassy spokesman Wang Xining said that his government is "considering buying more bonds, but this depends on the performance of those bonds, on commercial considerations."

"We want to see that the eurozone is in a good shape and are willing to offer assistance in various formats, but huge sums for bonds are not realistic. You can't depend on China alone to rescue Greece."

As for the idea of eurobonds, a prospect still fended off by Germany, Wang said that China would be interested in purchasing them, were they to be offered. "But each deal will be decided on economic grounds," he added.

In its assessment whether to buy a particular bond or not, the Chinese government is taking into consideration the recommendations of credit ratings agencies, but "also the political willingness to do structural reforms" and the advice from central bankers. "It is wiser to make judgements on the basis of wider opinions, not only ratings agencies," he noted.

"The economic fundamentals in Europe are still sound and there is a great potential for the economy to pick up again and grow, provided structural changes and budget controls are put in place," the spokesman concluded.

Focus

China offers market relief from euro-crisis

Better-than-expected Chinese economic figures helped markets to bounce back on Wednesday, after a plunge caused by worries over the spreading euro-crisis.

Focus

Wen: China will continue to buy European debt

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has promised greater co-operation between his country and troubled European nations, including the further purchase of public debt.

Merkel: Countries will not be kicked out of eurozone

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that kicking countries out of the eurozone is excluded as an option, while EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy has said that still further political pressure needs to be applied to Greece and Italy to slash their debt levels.

Emerging nations crafting plan to come to Europe's aid

In a stunning reversal of fortune, it has emerged that the so-called Brics nations, the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - who almost alone in the global economy have weathered the financial crisis sitting atop huge international reserves - are planning to come to Europe's aid.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Martens CentreI Say Europe, You Say...? Interview With Commission VP Jyrki Katainen
  2. Mission of China to the EUPresident Xi Jinping Proposes Stronger Global Security Governance at Interpol Assembly
  3. European Friends of ArmeniaEU Engagement Could Contribute to Lasting Peace in Nagorno-Karabakh
  4. UNICEFViolence in Myanmar Driving 12,000 Rohingya Refugee Children Into Bangladesh Every Week
  5. European Jewish CongressBulgaria Applauded for Adopting the Working Definition of Antisemitism
  6. EU2017EENorth Korea Leaves Europe No Choice, Says Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser
  7. Mission of China to the EUZhang Ming Appointed New Ambassador of the Mission of China to the EU
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  9. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  10. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  11. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  12. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe