Make me your Homepage
left corner left corner
China Daily Website

Forum speakers suggest more dialogue

Updated: 2012-05-31 15:24
By Uking Sun (

Editor's note: The European People's Party, the European Liberal Democrats and Reform Party, the European Socialist Party, the European Green Party, and the European Left Party may have sharply contrasting opinions over regional issues or global challenges, but they share at least one thing in common. They all believe in the necessity of maintaining dialogue with the Communist Party of China, which also believes that inter-party relations constitute an important part of the China-EU partnership. Almost every EU political party member to the third China-Europe High Level Political Parties Forum, whether they are young or old, women or men, or from Sweden, Germany, Romania or Belgium, they also share one belief in common – cooperation is always the best way to overcome challenges. Following are some opinions from speakers at the forum.

Forum speakers suggest more dialogue

Participants attend the third China-EU High Level Political Parties Forum in Brussels, Belgium May 29, 2012. [Photo by Uking Sun/]

Reinhard Bütikofer, European Green Party member

EU and China, the two parts being interdependent, should stand together to tackle common challenges ahead. Meanwhile, it is also to take note of the fact that the partnership includes certain inevitable disputes.

In order to overcome those disputes, it is necessary to look for shared interests, intensify exchanges with mutual respect, and learn from the success and failures of each other.

The two parts should shoulder responsibilities in various fields: economic issues and international cooperation in regions such as Syria, Korean Peninsula and Iran. They shall also cooperate on other global issues like global warming and financial regulations.

Elmar Brok, European People's Party member/chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament

The forum brings about great opportunities for politicians of the two sides. EU and China should face and solve challenges together, otherwise we will lose our future.

Concrete support is needed for EU-China partnership, and issues like energy and raw materials provision, intellectual and property rights and Europeans’ access to Chinese market need better understanding. Further, human rights should not be ignored in the dialogue between the two.

The current crisis consists of not only a challenge for the euro, but for the whole financial and banking system. Europe is on its way to make structural changes to cope with the ongoing crisis. Europe is capable of overcoming the crisis, being stronger with its competitiveness increased.

He closed his speech with a quote from former Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping, saying that to develop a sound partnership, the two parts shall "touch the stones to cross the river."

Veronique De Keyser, European Socialist Party member

We are making progress in Europe in resolving the debt crisis. The solution can offer EU a way out if it is considered across the globe, instead of at national or European level, and coordinated with the rest of the world. China is a partner to Europe, which is of "crucial importance". China’s concept of "harmony" is quite interesting for Europeans.

Graham Watson, president of the European Liberal Democrats and Reform Party (ELDR)

This forum is held at a time when the European Union is being tested. China shares an affinity with Europe since China is also at present being tested for reasons such as the slowdown on the international market.

He described Europe as an "aging, stagnating" continent, compared to other emerging countries such as India and China. He doesn’t think of China as a fire-breathing dragon, and in his view, China is only regaining the glory of history.

EU and China shared a lot of opportunities arising from their common agenda of research and development, and bio-diversity.

He believes that certain "demystification" has taken place with intensive exchanges last year and now they see more clearly "where the reform is needed." Concerning the difference, he left the following comment: "When feeling less comfortable, we need to talk more."



Hot Topics
Chinese charities are working hard at improving transparency, but most still need to do far more, according to an independent academic study.