The China-Europe freight train “Shanghai Express” is seen in Hamburg, Germany on October 26, 2021. （Xinhua / Wang Qing）
China and Europe have good prospects for cooperation to promote post-pandemic economic recovery, participants at the 18th meeting of the China-EU Roundtable said on Tuesday.
The China-EU Roundtable is a dialogue mechanism jointly launched by the Economic and Social Council of China, a Chinese advisory body, and its counterpart, the European Economic and Social Committee, an advisory body of the European Union.
Participants attended the meeting in Beijing and Europe via video link on Tuesday, focusing on economic recovery from the pandemic and possible cooperation between China and Europe.
Zhang Qingli, Chairman of CESC, said that China and Europe share many common interests and have enormous cooperation needs, with enhanced dialogue and cooperation for the benefit of both sides and the world.
China and Europe overcame the impact of the pandemic last year to maintain close high-level exchanges, said Zhang, who is also vice chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, the China’s highest political advisory body. He added that the economic and trade relationship between China and the EU is one of the largest and most dynamic in the world, with China becoming Europe’s largest trading partner last year.
Overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic and restoring economic growth are top priorities for all countries, he said, adding that the Belt and Road initiative had explored a new path for common development and opened up a new space for global economic growth.
Last month, the value of goods traded between China and the countries involved in the initiative reached $ 10.4 trillion, and direct investment by Chinese companies in the countries topped $ 130 billion, Zhang said.
It has been 10 years since the China-Europe freight rail service began, he said, with more than 1,000 trains running each month.
“It has become a vital channel for the countries involved to jointly fight the pandemic and promote recovery,” he said.
As two major forces for stability and two major economies in the world, China and the EU bear common responsibilities in promoting global prosperity and stability, maintaining multilateralism and an open world economy. , and solving global challenges, said Zhang.
He called on the two sides to support economic globalization, better interpret China-EU development policies and promote cooperation in key areas and integration of industrial and supply chains.
Faced with more complex global challenges in the post-pandemic era, Zhang said China and the EU must step up cooperation to build a more just international governance system.
EESC President Christa Schweng said the EU and China share many common concerns, including climate change, artificial intelligence, trade policy, rising energy costs and access to major raw materials.