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China, EU Hold Tenth Round of High-level Strategic Dialogue
2020/06/09

On 9 June, State Councilor and Foreign Minster Wang Yi and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell co-chaired the tenth round of China-EU high-level strategic dialogue, which was conducted via video link.

Wang noted that over the past 45 years of diplomatic ties, China-EU relations have withstood the shifts in the international landscape, continued to be defined by cooperation and displayed strong vitality. Dialogue and cooperation in various fields have delivered fruitful outcomes.

An important thing we have learned is that China and the EU enjoy more cooperation than competition, and more common understanding than disagreement. Both sides welcome a multi-polar world, support economic globalization, and seek greater democracy in international relations. Both advocate multilateralism, and are committed to safeguarding the UN-centered international system, the international order underpinned by international law, and the WTO-centered multilateral trading system.

An important inspiration we have gained is that China and the EU are fully able to enhance trust through equal-footed dialogue, achieve win-win results through mutually beneficial cooperation, address differences through constructive communications, and jointly tackle global challenges through enhanced coordination.

Wang stressed that China and the EU are long-term comprehensive strategic partners, not systemic rivals. We may have different social systems, but they are the choices of our peoples. China will firmly stay on the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, one that's proven successful in practice. At the same time, it does not seek to export its system or development model.

As observed by an ancient Chinese philosopher 2,500 years ago, "All living things should grow in harmony without hurting one another; and all the ways should move forward without interfering with one another." China believes that countries with different systems should respect each other, pursue dialogue as equals, and seek common ground while shelving differences, and different civilizations should appreciate one another and achieve common progress through mutual learning.

Wang pointed out that facing great changes unseen in a century, China and the EU should take the 45th anniversary as a new historical starting point to usher China-EU relations into a new stage in the post-COVID-19 era.

The two sides need to further promote high-level exchanges. It is particularly important to make sound preparations for the China-EU leaders' meeting and the China-EU Summit, to provide strong guidance and impetus for China-EU relations.

The two sides need to jointly facilitate the recovery of economic activities, keep China-Europe supply and industrial chains stable, step up experience-sharing on public health and emergency management, collaborate in the research and development of vaccines and medicine, and advance third party cooperation against COVID-19 in Africa.

The two sides need to strengthen communication and coordination on macroeconomic policies, pursue further openness and cooperation, and conclude the China-EU investment agreement negotiations on schedule.

Wang emphasized that China and the EU, as two major global forces, markets and civilizations, need to reinforce the shared commitment to multilateralism, move alongside history and in line with the common aspirations of the majority of countries. The two sides need to strengthen cooperation at the United Nations and other multilateral frameworks, safeguard world peace and stability, improve global public health governance, and actively respond to global challenges such as climate change, so as to enhance the strategic and global significance of China-EU relations.

Borrell said that the EU respects the path of development chosen by the Chinese people. It values China's important role in the international arena, and seeks to engage China in dialogue and cooperation, not conflict or confrontation, in a spirit of mutual respect. The EU has high expectations on its relations with China. It will work with China to ensure positive outcomes of the EU-China leaders' meeting and the EU-China Summit, jointly plan for and advance practical cooperation in various areas, and conclude the negotiations on the EU-China investment agreement within the year as scheduled, so as to forge a closer EU-China relationship. Both the EU and China are champions of multilateralism. The EU welcomes China's active participation in international cooperation, and is ready to work with China to tackle various global challenges and promote world peace and prosperity.

Wang expounded on the Chinese government's principled position on Hong Kong.

The two sides also had in-depth exchange of views on non-proliferation, the Iranian nuclear issue, Korean Peninsula, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, the Middle East peace process and other issues of mutual interest.

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