BUSINESS China, EU should solidify ties in wake of pandemic

BUSINESS

China, EU should solidify ties in wake of pandemic

China Daily

17:30, April 22, 2020

The China-Europe freight train, loaded with 123 automobiles, set off from Heilongjiang's Suifenhe Railway Port and headed toward Belgium on Saturday evening. (Photo: China Daily)

The COVID-19 epidemic will not weaken the resolution of China or the European Union to stabilize market demand, ensure growth and reinforce macroeconomic policy coordination in the next stage, experts said on Wednesday.

Business ties have been enhanced as both sides continue to exchange information and experience in COVID-19 prevention and control, actively cooperate in fields including diagnosis and treatment, drug and vaccine research and development since February, said Zhao Ping, director of the international trade research department under the aegis of the Academy of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade.

"These joint moves will be helpful for the EU to abandon prejudice and further deepen economic and trade cooperation with China," Zhao said.

She made the remarks after the academy released a report regarding EU's business environment in 2019 and 2020, urging the bloc to eliminate unreasonable market access thresholds, avoid overregulation curbing market economic development, stop all forms of discriminatory behavior, strengthen public service systems and shore up confidence of both Chinese and global businesses in EU markets.

Because the European Commission published the EU-China Strategic Outlook and considered China as "an economic competitor" and "a systemic rival", and put forward 10 actions seeking to "rebalance" its relations with China last February, the report discovered only 24 percent of China's corporate respondents chose the EU as their primary investment destination in 2019, far lower than the 78.63 percent of 2018.

Lu Ming, vice dean of CCPIT Academy, said as the whole world is seeking ways to overcome the virus and mitigate financial losses caused by the contagion, the EU should consider both the present and the long term in developing economic ties with China, and in the meantime push for market opening to ensure the openness, stability and safety of global supply chains.

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