EU Wants Fairer Trade Practices from China

EU Wants Fairer Trade Practices from China
European Union (EU) leaders, including Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, advocate for fairer trade relations with China, emphasizing the need to address current market access imbalances. 
During a significant meeting in Paris with Chinese President Xi Jinping, which also involved French President Emmanuel Macron, von der Leyen highlighted the EU's concerns over unfair competition and market distortions.
The EU has recently intensified its scrutiny of Chinese business practices, investigating whether European firms face fair conditions in China. This includes sectors such as medical devices and automotive, particularly electric vehicles (EVs), where Chinese companies have surged ahead with substantial state-backed subsidies.
Further complicating the trade landscape are cybersecurity issues and geopolitical tensions, notably China's military ties with Russia amidst the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Despite these challenges, the EU has signaled a desire for engagement without complete separation.
The EU is particularly wary of China's overproduction fueled by significant subsidies, which von der Leyen argues leads to global market oversupply and undermines fair trade. This concern extends to products like steel and subsidized EVs flooding international markets at competitive prices, which are difficult for European producers to match.
What Does This Mean for Me?
Amidst these discussions, Xi's visit is seen as a critical test of the EU's ability to navigate its complex relationship with China while managing pressures from the U.S. The visit also reflects internal EU divisions on approaching China, with some members viewing it as a vital economic partner despite strategic concerns.
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