China's 'Belt and Road' initiatives complement EU investment plan

By Liu Zuokui
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, June 29, 2015
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Chinese Premier Li Keqiang will attend the 17th China-EU leaders' meeting in Brussels on June 29, during which he will hold talks with senior EU leaders and elaborate China's ideas and suggestions for the further development of political and economic relations. Such meetings aim at promoting a more comprehensive relationship based on four principles -- peace, growth, reform and civilization.

 [By Zhai Haijun/]

Highlights of the 17th China-EU leaders' meeting

Economic and trade cooperation is of the greatest importance. Negotiations are still underway on some investment agreements. The two sides have accumulated significant cooperative experience in developing a new approach to urbanization and global climate control, so we can expect some substantive cooperative progress.

There are also broad prospects for cooperation in the digital field. For example, the "Internet plus" plan proposed by China fits in with the EU "digital single market" strategy.

The docking of the Juncker Investment Plan and China's "Belt and Road" initiatives has created high expectations for China-EU cooperation in infrastructure.

China and the EU are actively engaged in promoting four principles -- peace, growth, reform and civilization. How to consolidate these foundations with practical initiatives will be a major theme of the summit.

Cooperative potential for China and the EU

Cooperation between China and the EU has steadily become more pragmatic. Cooperation in trade and production, of concern to both sides, may achieve concrete results, while the cooperation between the Juncker Investment Plan and China's "Belt and Road" initiatives will likely reach only an intention to cooperate.

The EU countries have made certain responses, but generally they have been lukewarm, because the Chinese plan is so new that it will take a long time for all 28 EU members to reach a consensus and to form a consistent policy on China.

Besides, the initiatives are being aimed at neighboring countries to China and the fact that China has yet to introduce overall plans makes it hard for Europe to respond. China must do a good job with market research and risk assessment first.

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