China, EU to boost strategic partnership

By Xu Wei | China Daily | Updated: 2020-09-15 07:00
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President Xi Jinping co-hosts a China-Germany-EU leaders' meeting in Beijing, capital of China, Sept 14, 2020, via video link with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose country currently holds the EU's rotating presidency, European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. [Photo/Xinhua]

The leaders also announced the signing of a bilateral agreement on geographical indications on food products. The agreement was hailed by the council of the EU as "the first significant bilateral trade agreement signed between the EU and China".

It will ensure that 100 EU agrifood geographical indications such as Mozzarella di Bufala Campana cheese or Elia Kalamatas olives get protection on the Chinese market. Likewise, 100 Chinese products will be protected in the EU, thereby ensuring mutual recognition of agricultural traditions, the council said in a statement in July.

China's trade volume with the EU reached $705.1 billion last year, which increased by 3.4 percent from the previous year. China is the EU's biggest source of imports and its second-biggest export market. In 2019, China was the third-largest partner for EU exports of goods and the largest partner for EU imports of goods.

The EU had been China's largest trading partner for 16 consecutive years as of 2019. However, the bloc's position as China's largest trading partner has been taken by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in the first half of this year, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

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