In China, EU, France

In China-France-EU meeting, Xi Jinping urges right perception of China

Originally published 6 May 2024 on CGTN

Chinese President Xi Jinping (1st L), French President Emmanuel Macron (2nd R) and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (R) hold a trilateral meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, May 6, 2024. /X account of Hua Chunying

 

Chinese President Xi Jinping, French President Emmanuel Macron and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen held a trilateral meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris on Monday.

Xi expressed his delight in meeting with Macron and von der Leyen again. He noted that France is the first stop of his overseas visit this year, and that the trilateral meeting amplifies the Europe-wide significance of this visit.

China always approaches its relations with the European Union (EU) from a strategic and long-term perspective and regards Europe as an important dimension in its major-country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics and an important partner on its path toward Chinese modernization, Xi said.

It is hoped that China-France and China-EU relations will reinforce each other and thrive together, he said.

As the world enters a new period of turbulence and transformation, China and the EU, as two important forces in the world, should continue to see each other as partners, stay committed to dialogue and cooperation, deepen strategic communication, enhance strategic mutual trust, build strategic consensus, carry out strategic coordination, work for steady and sound growth of China-EU ties, and continue making new contributions to world peace and development, he said.

The China-EU relationship does not target any third party, nor should it be dependent on or dictated by any third party, he said, expressing hope that the EU institutions will develop the right perception of China and adopt a positive China policy.

The two sides should respect each other’s core interests and major concerns, safeguard the political foundation of their relations, and uphold the basic norms of international relations, he said.

Both sides should make good preparations for a new round of China-EU Summit and the high-level dialogues in the strategic, economic and trade, green, and digital fields, and foster a partnership on industrial and supply chains featuring stability and mutual trust, he said.

It is important to make good use of China’s visa-exemption policy for European countries and relevant arrangements to facilitate travel for foreign visitors, and encourage exchanges between the peoples and at the subnational level as well as cooperation on education and scientific research, in an effort to enhance popular support and public opinion for growing China-EU relations, said Xi.

Xi pointed out that China’s new energy industry has made real progress in open competition and represents advanced production capacity. “It not only increases global supply and alleviates the pressure of global inflation, but also contributes significantly to global climate response and green transition. The so-called problem of China’s overcapacity does not exist either from the perspective of comparative advantage or in light of global demand,” he said.

China-EU cooperation is in essence complementary and mutually beneficial and the two sides have extensive common interests and broad space for cooperation in green and digital transition, he said. It is necessary to address economic and trade frictions through dialogue and consultation, and accommodate each other’s legitimate concerns, he added.

During the meeting, Macron noted that now more than ever, France and the EU need to strengthen cooperation with China, as this bears on the future of Europe.

France hopes to enhance dialogue and cooperation with China, and strengthen mutual trust and friendship between France and China and also between the EU and China, he said.

“The EU refuses the logic of decoupling and welcomes investment and cooperation by Chinese companies in Europe. The EU hopes to step up cooperation with China and jointly safeguard the security and stability of value chains and supply chains in Europe. France wishes to work with China closely to address global challenges such as climate change and marine biodiversity,” he added.

President von der Leyen noted that the EU and China enjoy a sound relationship and will mark the 50th anniversary of their relations next year.

“Given China’s weight in global affairs, it is important that the EU maintains good relations with China. This will determine whether global challenges such as climate change and the Ukraine crisis can be better addressed. The EU wishes to work with China in the spirit of mutual respect, seek common ground despite differences, enhance mutual trust, avoid misunderstanding, jointly uphold the international order based on international law, and promote world peace, security and prosperity,” she said.

The EU commends China for its efforts and progress made in green transition and development, acknowledges China’s legitimate right to develop, and wishes to continue candid dialogue with China and strengthen their cooperation, she added.

On the Ukraine crisis, Xi pointed out that China, France and the EU all wish to see an early ceasefire and return of peace in Europe, and support political settlement of the crisis. The three parties need to jointly oppose spillover and escalation of the fighting, create conditions for peace talks, safeguard international energy and food security, and keep industrial and supply chains stable, he said.

“China did not create the Ukraine crisis, nor is it a party to it. All along, China has been working vigorously to facilitate talks for peace. China’s objective and just position and its constructive role have been widely recognized by the international community. China is ready to stay in communication with relevant parties,” he added.

On the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, he stressed that the pressing task is to realize a comprehensive ceasefire as quickly as possible; the key priority is to ensure humanitarian assistance; and the fundamental way out is to implement the two-State solution.

“China supports Palestine’s full membership in the United Nations. China and the EU share many important commonalities on the question of Palestine. China is ready to work with the EU to support a more broad-based, authoritative and effective international peace conference to be held as quickly as possible to set a timetable and a road map for the two-State solution, and to promote comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian question at an early date,” he said.

The three leaders are of the view that the trilateral meeting has increased mutual understanding, built consensus for cooperation, and identified ways to address problems. They expressed readiness to keep working together to promote sound and steady growth of China-EU relations.

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