16th Aug 2022


For China and EU, cooperation is our only right way forward

  • 'It has always been the common vision of China and the EU to safeguard the rules-based multilateral trading system with the WTO at its core' (Photo: European Commission)
Listen to article

On July 19th, the 9th China-EU High-Level Economic and Trade Dialogue (HED), co-chaired by China's vice-premier Liu He and executive vice-president of the European Commission, Valdis Dombrovskis, and participated by more than 20 ministerial-level officials, was successfully held.

Through pragmatic, frank and efficient discussions, the two sides reached a series of consensus and deliverables on macro-economic policy coordination, cooperation on industrial and supply chains, WTO reform, further market opening-up, implementation of the China-EU Agreement on Geographical Indications, animal and plant inspection and quarantine, two-way opening-up of the financial sector and regulatory cooperation, among others.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

The dialogue injected stability into China-EU cooperation.

To further implement the important consensus reached by president Xi Jinping, president Charles Michel and president von der Leyen at various occasions, especially at the 23rd China-EU Summit, the two sides stressed the importance of jointly combating global challenges and deepening supply chain cooperation.

In a world of profound changes, we believe that healthy and stable China-EU relations, especially in the economic and trade realm, can help counter the uncertainty on the global economic stage, and are conducive to global development and prosperity.

This is especially true as global economy suffers from multiple crises.

The two sides should make good use of mechanisms such as macro-economic policy dialogue and financial dialogue, strengthen communication and coordination on macro-economic policies, deepen cooperation on global food and energy security, and jointly promote the stability of the world economic and financial market.

In an effort to boost the post-pandemic recovery, China and the EU need to maintain the stability of global industrial and supply chains, strengthen the coordination and cooperation on Covid-19 pandemic control, and ensure the secure and smooth running of sea, air and land trade routes including China Railway Express.

The dialogue injected new impetus into China-EU cooperation.

It has always been the common vision of China and the EU to safeguard the rules-based multilateral trading system with the WTO at its core.

At the meeting, the pledge to uphold unimpeded multilateral trade and advance financial cooperation was once again enshrined by the two sides.

Next stage

In the next stage, the two sides will work together to implement the outcomes of MC12 and continue to discuss the WTO reform road-map and other important issues through dialogue mechanisms including China-EU Joint Working Group on WTO Reform.

On more concrete issues, to create a more favourable business environment, both sides will actively promote trade and investment liberalisation and facilitation, promote fair competition, and better protect intellectual property rights.

The two sides will further promote two-way opening-up and regulatory cooperation in the financial sector and welcome qualified financial institutions to invest in each other's markets.

Both sides agreed to strengthen cooperation on green finance and promote the use and the improvement of the Common Ground Taxonomy Table.

Both sides welcomed the signature of the Memorandum of Understanding On Deepening Cooperation on Animal Health and Sanitary Matters, and the Memorandum of Understanding on Regulatory Cooperation on Shanghai Clearing House, and will deepen exchanges and cooperation in relevant fields.

To better meet the needs of the two peoples, China and the EU also agreed to release the second batch of GI list as soon as possible and expand trade in agricultural products.

Entering the third decade of the 21st century, the world is faced with mounting challenges such as the Covid-19 pandemic, climate change, food crisis and the risk of economic recession, to which no economy can stay immune.

It's quite astounding that some people should trumpet theories like "EU-China engagement is useless" and "EU-China economic and trade decoupling" in face of such dire situation.

The good news is that, the successful convening of the 9th China-EU HED and its outcomes show that despite differences, China and the EU still have broad space for cooperation.

As indispensable players in today's world, the only right path forward for China and the EU is to focus on cooperation, manage differences, and jointly address global challenges.

Going forward, the two sides should translate the spirit of the Dialogue into practice, and promote the sustainable and healthy development of China-EU pragmatic cooperation on economy and trade.

First, we should remain committed to cooperation, rise above external interference and remove obstacles affecting further development of bilateral relations.

Second, we should strengthen communication and dialogue by making full use of existing mechanisms and creating new ones.

Third, we should focus on implementation.

The working teams from both sides should maintain close exchanges and communication on implementing the consensus reached by the leaders of both sides and the outcomes of the dialogue, and come up with a practical and concrete working plan as soon as possible.

The Mission of the People's Republic of China to the European Union and I myself will maintain close contacts with relevant departments on the EU side and make unremitting efforts to this end.

Author bio

Peng Gang is minister and head of the economic and commercial office of the Chinese Mission to the EU.


This article is sponsored by a third party. All opinions in this article reflect the views of the author and not of EUobserver.

Ensuring global food security: what China says and does

The problem did not pop up just this summer. The consequences of the climate crisis, compounded by the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict, have significantly driven up food prices, tipping millions of people into hunger, especially in developing countries.


Is China a challenge to Nato? Beijing responds

The Chinese mission to the EU responds to last week's Madrid Nato summit, which stated China posed "systemic challenges" and warned against the "deepening strategic partnership between Russia and China".


What is China up to with its new 'Global Security Initiative'?

China's ambitions and clearly-stated strategic objectives are no less than delegitimising and finally replacing what it views as the Western-dominated and unfair existing world order. It denounces the current global system as the main source of instability and insecurity.

EU, wake up! Don't leave West Balkans to Russia or China

Russia's attack on Ukraine and European values must remind us how important the enlargement process is, if properly conducted, as a motor for democracy, freedom, peace, the rule of law and prosperity, write six S&D MEPs.

Dialogue and action – Nordic cooperation and view on COP26

Nordic countries launched several initiatives at the COP26 climate conference which will have a real impact on the ground. Nordic and UK pension funds are to invest billions in clean energy and climate initiatives. Greenland has joined the Paris Agreement.

News in Brief

  1. Zelensky vows to 'target' Russian soldiers at nuclear plant
  2. Putin vows greater cooperation with North Korea and Taliban
  3. Hungarian judge slams Orbán's rule-of-law attacks
  4. Borrell condemns 'despicable' Rushdie attack
  5. Slow wind-farm approvals risk green goals, warns industry
  6. Increase in people crossing Channel to UK in 2022
  7. Swedish government to toughen gang-crime penalties
  8. Germany to help nationals cope with energy price spike

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Canadian ministers join forces to combat harmful content online
  3. European Centre for Press and Media FreedomEuropean Anti-SLAPP Conference 2022
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers write to EU about new food labelling
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersEmerging journalists from the Nordics and Canada report the facts of the climate crisis
  6. Council of the EUEU: new rules on corporate sustainability reporting

Latest News

  1. Germany needs to cut gas use by 20% to stave off winter crisis
  2. Europe's wildfire destruction set to hit new record
  3. How Putin and Erdoğan are making the West irrelevant
  4. Defying Russian bombs, Ukraine football starts 2022 season
  5. Sweden to extradite man wanted by Turkey
  6. EU must beware Beijing's new charm offensive
  7. Forest fire near Bordeaux forces over 10,000 to flee
  8. Estonia and Latvia sever China club ties

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us