Chinese Premier Li Keqiang travels to EU Summit in Brussels

World Today

A meeting designed to strengthen cooperation. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang heads to Brussels this week to attend an annual summit with EU leaders. Trade, investment and global governance are among the big agenda topics. CGTN’s Gerald Tan takes a look at the deepening ties between China and Europe.

China and the European Union share a robust trade relationship. On average, their trade tops more than $1 billion every day.

In 2017, China’s exports to the EU totaled more than $420 billion. In return, the EU exported goods worth about $222 billion to China.

The number one item: passenger cars, whereas the biggest demand from the EU was for Chinese telecommunications equipment. Beijing is keen to stress, though, that ties go beyond just economics.

Wang Chao, the Chinese Vice Foreign Minister said: “China and Europe share broad common interests in deepening mutually beneficial and win-win practical cooperation, upholding multilateralism and free trade, promoting global governance and safeguarding world peace and stability.”

The trip takes Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to Brussels for the 21st China-EU Summit.

Li also heads to Dubrovnik, Croatia for the 16+1 summit with Central, Eastern and South Eastern European Countries.

That meeting aims to expand Chinese investment in the region, and it’s already bearing fruit – trade volume between China and the 16 CEE nations is up 21 percent, surpassing $82 billion last year.

Europe is the destination for Premier Li’s first foreign trip this year, much like it was for Chinese President Xi Jinping last month when he traveled to Italy, France, and Monaco.

Taken together, they send a message of cooperation and opportunity.