'China and Europe ready for stronger ties' - RTHK
Temperature Humidity
News Archive Can search within past 12 months

'China and Europe ready for stronger ties'

2023-11-24 HKT 21:42
Share this story facebook
  • Li Qiang, right, and Catherine Colonna hold talks at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Photo: AFP
    Li Qiang, right, and Catherine Colonna hold talks at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Photo: AFP
Europe should not be afraid of working with China because of competition, and the two sides should work together to enhance the reliability and stability of economic and trade relations, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Friday.

"China's position is clear. We will adhere to our support of Europe's strategic autonomy," Wang said when asked about China's view of its relationship with Europe at a press briefing with his French counterpart in Beijing.

French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna was visiting the capital and earlier met Premier Li Qiang with whom she discussed a broad range of topics including re-balancing France's economic relationship with the world's second-largest economy.

Colonna said France was committed to dialogue with China, affirming ties after a European Union anti-subsidy probe backed by Paris into Chinese-made electric vehicles was blasted as "protectionist" by Beijing.

Her trip is centred on encouraging exchanges between citizens of both countries such as students and tourists, threatened to be overshadowed by the trade issues.

"We are really committed to dialogue with China," Colonna told Li, adding that she was "honoured" and happy to see him after their Paris meeting in June.

Wang said the differing demands of competition and cooperation need not clash.

"Of course there will be competition in cooperation, but we should not be afraid of cooperation because of competition. The biggest risk we need to get rid of is the uncertainty brought by broad politicisation," Wang said, adding that the dependency most in need of reduction is protectionism.

"At present, exchanges between China's business circles are resuming in an all-round way and heating up rapidly. We will listen to the voices of the European business community, earnestly solve the problems of investors in China," Wang said in the press briefing with his counterpart.

Both foreign ministers agreed to cooperate on a number of fronts.

"With China, we are working to find answers to global climate, biodiversity and debt challenges," Colonna wrote in a post on social media platform X.

Wang said he hopes to deepen exchanges with France in civil nuclear and aerospace, and explore emerging areas such as education and scientific research.

Premier Li, in his meeting with Colonna earlier, also took an upbeat stance on broader bilateral ties.

"Under the strategic leadership of President Xi Jinping and (French) President (Emmanuel) Macron, the relationship between China and France has been developing better and better in all aspects since this year," he said. (Reuters)

'China and Europe ready for stronger ties'