May 8, 2009
The second EU-China High Level Economic & Trade Dialogue (HLD) ended today in Brussel. A debriefing will be posted next week.
The Financial Times published an op-ed today by the leader of the Chinese delegation, Vice-Premier Wang Qishan, under the title, “China and Britain need to join hands over crisis”
Readers may be surprised that the Vice-Premier, during the HLD should have published an article which does not once mention the EU and focuses entirely on China-UK cooperation.
“Our two countries have a lot to offer each other and great potential for co-operation in the financial sector.”
“Since the outbreak of this crisis, our two countries and the rest of the international community have stood side by side and worked closely together.”
This suggests that China has no real interest in the EU but instead concentrates on its bilateral relationship with the UK, and presumably France and Germany.
However, Wang Qishan wrote an op-ed in the International Herald Tribune published on 5 May, in which his entire focus was on China and the EU.
“The economies of China and the E.U. have much to offer each other and our two-way trade holds a huge potential.
China and the E.U. should make full use of the platform presented by the high-level economic dialogue to strengthen communication and cooperation and jointly oppose trade protectionism.”
Mr Wang was clearly badly advised to write in the International Herald Tribune on the EU-China meeting and in the Financial Times on the UK-China meeting.
In any case, the first mentioned article could have had an explanatory opening paragraph which put the UK-China meeting in context.
It is a great pity that the quality of China’s communications falls short of the quality of its leaders.Author : Stanley Crossick