Skip to main content

Chinese premier praises EU, says free trade must be upheld

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Bulgarian PM Boyko Borissov and Li Keqiang, Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China react after the press conference at National Palace of Culture in Sofia during the 7th Summit of Heads of Government of CEEC and China, on July 7, 2018. (AP Photo)

SOFIA, Bulgaria-- Free trade and international cooperation must be upheld to avoid slowing down the global economy, the Chinese premier told peers from central and eastern Europe Saturday.

Premier Li Keqiang also praised the European Union, calling the 28-member bloc an "indispensable force" and important for global peace, stability and prosperity.

Li, China's No. 2 leader behind President Xi Jinping, attended a gathering in Bulgaria's capital, Sofia, with government leaders from 16 European countries amid escalating trade battles between the United States and China.

The U.S. imposed 25 percent duties Friday on $34 billion (3.7 trillion yen) worth of imports from China. The Chinese Foreign Ministry said "retaliatory tariffs" also took effect, without offering more details.

The 16+1 meeting of the central and eastern European nations and China is part of China's $900 billion (99 trillion yen) "New Silk Road" plan to boost its influence in Europe through investments and closer economic links.

"We need to uphold multilateralism, we need to uphold free trade ... and work together to prevent a slowdown of the global economic recovery," Li said.

Countries around the world were affected by the global financial crisis that started in 2008 and which led to banking crises and the so-called "Great Recession," especially in the U.S. and Europe, where growth has improved over the past few years.

China's efforts to increase its economic and financial influence in the European Union, which include the financing and construction of new roads, rail lines and ports, have been met with concern by Brussels. EU officials are in part worried that subsidized Chinese companies will have a market advantage without reciprocal deals for European firms.

Li downplayed such concerns, calling views that China is trying create rifts in Europe by pursuing deals with eastern European countries a "misunderstanding."

"There is no fundamental conflict of interests between China and Europe," Li said.

Li said China would sponsor a "global partnership cooperation center" to study EU trade rules.

China and the 16 countries at the summit "need to carefully study how our cooperation can fit in with the EU laws and regulations," Li said. "China and Europe are geographically far apart from each other and we have different cultures, so when Chinese business people make investments here, they need to have more knowledge of Europe."

While U.S. President Donald Trump frequently has criticized the EU on trade and security issues and the two powers are in the middle of their own tariff battles, Li was very complimentary of the EU.

"The EU is a very important force for peace and stability and prosperity. It is an indispensable force in the world," Li said. "Unity between China and Europe and cooperation between us can ensure peace and stability in the whole world."

China and some of the 16 countries at the summit signed memorandums and agreements on economic cooperation and other issues.

Li said China would like to import more agricultural products from central and eastern Europe and was interested in buying up to 10 million tons of tobacco leaves from Bulgaria.

At the same time, the premier said it was "very important" for Chinese companies to set up factories in the region, noting that Chinese products were popular with consumers.

"First and foremost, our cooperation is of win-win and mutual benefit," Li insisted.


http://www.asahi.com/sp/ajw/articles/AJ201807080016.html

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Balochistan to establish first medical university

https://www.dawn.com/news/1366135

The Newspaper's Staff CorrespondentOctober 25, 2017QUETTA: The provincial cabinet on Tuesday approved the draft for establishing a medical university in Balochistan.Health minister Mir Rehmat Saleh Baloch made the announcement while speaking at a press conference after a cabinet meeting.“The cabinet has approved the draft of the medical university which would be presented in the current session of the Balochistan Assembly,” he said, adding with the assembly’s approval the Bolan Medical College would be converted into a medical university.Published in Dawn, October 25th, 2017

5 Shia Hazara community members gunned down in Pakistan

http://m.hindustantimes.com/world-news/5-shia-hazara-community-members-gunned-down-in-pakistan/story-CHWR4lYByRHzf2KjHjMloI.html



Five members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.This is not the first time that members of the Hazara community have been targeted in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan.(Reuters File Photo)Updated: Sep 11, 2017 00:20 ISTBy Press Trust of India, Press Trust of India, KarachiFive members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.The gunmen targeted a car in Kuchluck area of Quetta while it was coming from the Chaman border crossing area, police said.The firing took place when the travellers had stopped at a filling station to refuel their vehicle. Five people of the Shia Hazara community, including two women, died in …

China’s 'Digital Silk Road': Pitfalls Among High Hopes

https://thediplomat.com/2017/11/chinas-digital-silk-road-pitfalls-among-high-hopes/


Will information and communication technologies help China realize its Digital Silk Road?By Wenyuan WuNovember 03, 2017In his speech at the opening ceremony of China’s 19th Party Congress, President Xi Jinping depicted China as a model of scientific and harmonious development for developing nations. Xi’s China wants to engage the world through commerce but also through environmental protection and technological advancement. This includes Beijing’s efforts to fight climate change with information and communication technologies (ICTs) that it plans to export along its “One Belt One Road” initiative (OBOR). Xi may have ambitious plans, but could China be throwing up obstacles in its own way?In his speech, the Chinese president emphasized the need to modernize the country’s environmental protections. The Chinese state is taking an “ecological civilization” approach to development and diplomacy, with a natio…