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Premier: Peace, cooperation an irreversible trend

Updated: Jun 4,2017 11:20 AM Beijing News

Premier Li Keqiang has responded to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s words at the 12th China-EU Business Summit, on June 2, stating while international uncertainties are increasing, China-EU relations are stabilizing.

“My visit to Europe is aimed at building consensus, increasing mutual trust and enhancing cooperation between China and Europe to counter international uncertainties with a stable China-EU relationship,” he said.

“I hope the summit will send out a stable market expectation for entrepreneurs.

“The trend of world peace and cooperation is irreversible, and mankind has the wisdom to maintain long-term peace for a safe business environment.”

Premier Li’s positive position won a warm applause at the gathering.

China and Europe work together for economic globalization

The Premier said, in a speech at the summit, China and Europe shared a stance on key international concepts, stating both sides should safeguard the main trend of globalization, as well as work for universal, inclusive and fair growth.

“We cannot deny globalization may have a negative impact on certain industries and groups of people in some countries,” he said.

“The solution lies in improved global governance, which can bring inclusive benefits to all countries and people.”

Free and fair trade equally important

Premier Li has stated the EU should defend the rules of being free and having fair trade. His comments were in response to President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker’s words on the matter.

The Premier said, while it was difficult to achieve an absolute bilateral trade balance for every country, it was necessary for countries to work for sustainable and balanced trades on an international scale.

“It is urgent for us to adhere to the principles of free and fair trade with multilateralism, inclusiveness and nondiscrimination, which will revitalize trade and investment,” he said.

Jointly safeguard rule-based multilateral economic and trade order

Premier Li confirmed China has continuously advocated multilateral rules, including those of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“All parties should comply with the WTO rules and act accordingly,” he said.

“I hope the European Union can fulfill its obligations under Article 15 of the Protocol on China’s accession to the WTO, in order to send a positive signal on safeguarding the multilateral system and rules.”

Cooperation benefits both sides

China and EU countries have reaped significant benefits from globalization and free trade.

In 2016, EU investments in China grew by 35.1 percent year-on-year, and in the first four months of 2017, the China-EU trade reached $180.7 billion. The figure was the result of a 9.1 percent increase year-on-year.

“As the China-EU cooperation has reached a high level, the steady progress of our all-around cooperation will benefit both people,” Premier Li said.

He added China was ready to accelerate negotiations with the EU in regards to high-level investment agreements, and said the countries would start joint research on free trade zones.

The Premier said these efforts would promote trade liberalization and facilitation, and push forward a balanced growth of bilateral trade, in order to form an open, equal and win-win situation.