President Barroso will represent the European Commission at the EU China Summit in Beijing on 5 September, along with Commissioner for Employment and Social Affairs, Vladimir Spidla and Commissioner for External Trade, Peter Mandelson. The Chinese delegation will be led by Prime Minister Wen Jiabao. A meeting of the European leaders with Chinese President Hu will take place in the margins of the Summit.
Prior to the Summit, Commission President José Manuel Barroso commented:
“This year we celebrate the 30th Anniversary of EU-China diplomatic ties, during which relations between the EU and China have continued to expand. During my July visit to China, we confirmed the solid commitment of both sides towards forging a long-term strategic partnership. At the 8th EU-China Summit we will agree on a new strategic dialogue with China and, through a joint declaration, launch an important new partnership to enable us to act jointly on climate change, one of the most significant global challenges of our times. “
This year’s Summit follows President Barroso’s successful first official visit to China in July and marks the 30th Anniversary of EU-China diplomatic relations. The Summit will reflect the fact that the EU and China increasingly act jointly on global challenges.
At the 8th Annual EU-China Summit, taking place on 5 September in Beijing, the European Union and China will launch a new partnership on climate change to jointly tackle the global challenges that it presents. A new EU-China strategic dialogue at Vice Foreign-Ministerial level will also be agreed. Summit discussions will focus on a broad range of issues including the environment, a new framework agreement, readmission, human rights, and economic and trade questions – in particular improved access to the Chinese market and Market Economy Status. A number of regional and international issues, including UN reform, North Korea and Burma/Myanmar will also feature.
Agreements to be concluded in the margins of the Summit include a new dialogue on employment and social affairs; two Memorandums of Understanding on Geographical Indication and on a Chinese Science and Technology Year in Europe; a protocol extending the existing maritime agreement to new Member States; two environment projects on biodiversity (€30 million) and riverbasin management (€ 25 million); and a € 500 million European Investment Bank loan. In addition, a joint statement will be made on space exploitation.
Established in 1975, EU-China relations have strengthened considerably in recent years, particularly since the adoption of a new Commission strategy document on China (A maturing partnership: common interests and challenges in EU-China relations) and China’s first ever policy paper on the EU in 2003. In 2004 both sides agreed to broaden the relationship into a strategic partnership. It was also agreed to progress toward negotiations on a new EU-China framework agreement to replace and update the 1985 Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement.Version 25/08/05