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EU relations with China

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EU relations with China

 

SUMMARY OF:

Regulation (EEC) No 2616/85 on the conclusion of a Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement between the EU and China

Agreement on Trade and Economic Cooperation between the EU and China

EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation

Joint communication (JOIN(2016) 30 final) — Elements for a new EU strategy on China

Council conclusions on EU strategy on China

WHAT IS THE AIM OF THESE DOCUMENTS?

They set the basis for the EU-China Strategic Partnership, which has developed from trade and economic cooperation to include foreign affairs and security matters, as well as addressing international challenges such as climate change and global economic governance.

KEY POINTS

The EU-China Strategic 2020 Agendais the guiding document for the relationship between the 2parties. It is broken down into 4main categories:

  • Peace and security: the EU and China support reinforced cooperation and strengthened dialogues on international and regional security issues with global implications.
  • Prosperity: the EU and China focus on key initiatives, such as:
    • more open trade and investments;
    • industrial information exchanges;
    • cooperation in agricultural research; and
    • further cooperation in transport and infrastructure development.
  • Sustainable development: the EU and China focus on their joint responsibility for advancing global development through cooperation in:
  • People-to-people exchanges: together, the EU and China represent over a quarter of the world’s population, so expanding contacts between people on both sides is important in enhancing a common understanding. Therefore, there is a focus on culture, education and youth dialogues. The EU and China engage in over 60 regular dialogues on important foreign policy areas,as well as technical topics such as industrial policy, education, customs, nuclear energy and consumer protection.

New approach

  • Strategy and policy for EU engagement with China over the next 5 years are based on:
  • Together, thesefocus on:
    • establishing a strong, clear and unified voice for the EU in its approach to China that promotes democracy, the rule of law, human rights, respect for the principles of the United Nations Charter and international law;
    • boosting trade and investment by concluding a comprehensive agreement on investment. This should create a level playing field and open up market opportunities for both the EU and China, perhaps leading, once the conditions are right, to broader trade ambitions, such as a free trade agreement as a long-term perspective. The EU also expects to conclude an agreement on geographical indications based on the highest international level of protection; and
    • increasing principled, practical and pragmatic cooperation between EU and Chinese foreign and security policy. Both sides will work more closely together, both bilaterally and in multilateral organisations like the UN, to address global issues like migration, development assistance and fighting climate change.

BACKGROUND

  • Diplomatic relations between the EU (then the EEC) and China were established in 1975. Since then, the partnership has evolved to tackle a wide spectrum of global challenges ranging from non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to the security situation in Asia, through global warming, to the fight against illegal migration and human trafficking.
  • As strategic partners, there is increasing cooperation between the EU and China on key international and regional issues, and the 2 sides share responsibility for promoting peace, prosperity and sustainable development for the benefit of all.
  • The EU is China’s largest trading partner, while China is the second largest trading partner for the EU. The trade and investment relationship between the 2 is an important source of wealth, jobs, development and innovation for both sides.
  • For more information, see:

MAIN DOCUMENTS

Council Regulation (EEC) No 2616/85 of 16 September 1985 concerning the conclusion of a Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement between the European Economic Community and the People’s Republic of China (OJ L 250, 19.9.1985, p. 1)

Agreement on Trade and Economic Cooperation between the European Economic Community and the People’s Republic of China (OJ L 250, 19.9.1985, pp. 2–7)

EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation

Joint communication to the European Parliament and the Council — Elements for a new EU strategy on China (JOIN(2016) 30 final, 22.6.2016)

EU Strategy on China — Council conclusions, (Brussels, 18.7.2016)

last update 20.03.2017

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