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China-EU relations will be further improved

Updated: Jun 3,2017 3:51 AM

Premier Li Keqiang co-hosted the 19th China-European Union leaders’ meeting held in Brussels with European Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on June 2.

Premier Li said that China attaches great importance to China-European Union (EU) relations, supports EU countries in following their own development choices, and is happy to see a united, stable, and prosperous Europe.

Amid the uncertain international situation, Premier Li hopes this meeting will send positive signals that China and EU will maintain and further consolidate their relationship, and both sides will face global uncertainties with stable China-EU cooperation.

He said that China-EU cooperation has made continuous progress in recent years, and the two sides will link development strategies, expand two-way opening-up, promote the negotiation of investment pacts and make efforts to upgrade trade and investment.

China and the EU will also strengthen cooperation in infrastructure, aviation and information and cyber security to promote China-EU interconnectivity, Premier Li added.

He also called for the two sides to expand cooperation regarding small and medium-sized enterprises, finance, renewable energy and successfully hold the China-EU Blue Year this year. He also promoted the China-EU Tourism Year in 2018 as an opportunity to facilitate people-to-people exchanges.

China is willing to work with the EU to ensure the G20 Summit, scheduled to be held in Hamburg, Germany this year, will make new contributions to global economic growth and cooperation and the improvement of global governance, said Premier Li.

He also called on the two sides to strengthen cooperation to better cope with climate change, promote the implementation of the Paris Agreement, make concerted efforts for the implementation of 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, and strengthen cooperation in anti-terrorism, security and defense.

Premier Li also stressed that Article 15 of the Protocol on China’s Accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) is a “sunset clause”, and all sides should abide by it, which is not only implementing international obligations, but also following international rules and orders. He suggested the two sides should cope with trade disputes through bilateral or multi-lateral channels.

China and Europe have produced cooperation in major international affairs, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, climate change and the Iranian nuclear issue, according to Tusk and Juncker.

Both sides will make further efforts to enhance cooperation in free trade, climate change and security for the benefit of world peace, stability and prosperity. The EU highly values bilateral economic and trade relations, supports China’s Belt and Road initiative, and is willing to expand cooperation and interconnectivity and two-way investment, they said.

After the meeting, the leaders witnessed the signing of more than 10 cooperation documents in investment, intellectual property rights, customs, and scientific and technological cooperation and inaugurated the China-EU Blue Year and Tourism Year.