Feeble effort [By Jiao Haiyang/China.org.cn]
The 14th China-E.U. leaders’ meeting, which had been postponed due to the tight schedule of dealing with the European sovereign debt crisis, was held in Beijing on Feb. 14.
Resolving the European debt crisis remains the primary task for the European Union, which is facing bleak growth prospects. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects the euro-zone economy to shrink 0.5 percent in 2012 and grow 0.8 percent in 2013, a markdown of 1.6 percentage points and 0.7 percentage points respectively, from the IMF’s last forecast.
In this context, the European debt crisis will undoubtedly be a major focus of the 14th China-E.U. leaders’ meeting. Helping Europe get out of the debt crisis serves China’s long-term interests. The European Union remains a major player on the world stage despite its debt issues, and China continues to see it as one of the most important strategic partners.
Furthermore, the European Union has long been China’s largest export market and source of technology import as well as major source of foreign investment. China’s cooperation with the European Union in resolving the debt crisis is a normal economic behavior, and should not be interpreted as “the poor saving the rich.”
Europe should also consider China's participation in solving the European debt crisis in a rational and peaceful way. China does not have the ambition or capacity to “buy out” or “control” Europe like what some European media said, and China always supports the euro and the European Union, which is a sharp contrast to the negative international voices on the prospect of Europe.
The Chinese government has promised that it will not connect the two issues of recognizing China's market economy status and lifting military sales embargo against China with China's participation in solving the European debt crisis, and it is a good example of China's positive standpoint towards the European Union.
Leaders of both China and Europe should regard this summit as an opportunity to achieve three goals: cooperating with each other to cope with the European debt crisis, deepening their economic and trade relationship and strengthening their communication in dealing with important issues currently faced by international communities.
In a word, China and Europe have great potentials for their cooperation in various realms, and it will be helpful to turn the potentials into realities if both sides keep a rational and peaceful state of mind.