The CCCEU comments on Sino-EU dialogue
On 28 July, China and the European Union held their 8th High-Level Trade and Economic Dialogue. The China Chamber of Commerce to the EU (CCCEU) has closely monitored the outcomes of the meeting, in which the two sides exchanged views on ongoing negotiations on the China-EU Comprehensive Agreement on Investment.
On the one hand, we see positive signals as both sides have expressed appreciation for mutual efforts and urged each other to strengthen cooperation in the current global context.
On the other, it is also clear that the European Union needs to keep abreast with the latest developments in China's process of opening to foreign investment. In fact, the EU has made positive remarks on the significant progress made on issues related to providing each other a level playing field, and urged further progress on market access. This shows a limited understanding of China's efforts in opening up and providing market access.
The EU needs to be aware of its own progress in openness to foreign companies investing in its market. As our latest survey among CCCEU members shows, the EU business environment is becoming less friendly to Chinese companies active in the continent. Specifically, in addition to access, there is reduced administrative support and little facilitation in understanding the complex European business landscape.
On behalf of our members, we advocate improvements to be undertaken by the EU and its member states to support Chinese companies, which ultimately benefit local economies through employment opportunities and investment, as our 2019 Annual Report shows.
“As the representative of Chinese companies in Europe, I am happy that the EU is increasingly positive about the progress China has made in opening to foreign investors. The EU is recognising the efforts made, and this is commendable. But let’s not forget that Chinese companies do not find welcoming conditions in the EU,” said Ms Zhou Lihong, Chairperson of the CCCEU.
“Chinese companies are very keen on cooperation with their European partners, and are ready to play a role in fostering Sino-European economic interaction. In fact, China-EU trade and economic relations are guided by the political leadership of China and the EU but the realisation of this economic partnership remains in the hands of companies which make these relations real, strong, and durable in time.”
The CCCEU remains committed to being a platform for economic opportunities, and its members seek development of closer Sino-European economic relations.
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