'China's door is open to all' – ambassador hails EU investment deal
Updated 01:56, 01-Jan-2021


China's ambassador to the EU has told CGTN the new bilateral investment deal will help the two economic powers work more closely together – but has insisted "China's door is open to all."

In an exclusive interview, Zhang Ming said the deal – finally agreed yesterday after seven years of negotiations – "will widen market access, improve business environment, strengthen institutional safeguards and create a brighter future of cooperation for both Chinese and EU investors."

READ MORE: EU and China open new chapter with investment agreement

The deal could help boost mutual investment between the two economic powerhouses – an area in which Zhang sees plenty of room for improvement. "Currently, China-EU capital flows are still small," he said. 

"The EU takes up 5 percent of FDI [foreign direct investment] flowing into China, and China only takes up 3.4 percent of total FDI in the EU… this does not match the sheer size of the Chinese and EU economies."




Asked if the timing was curious, given the impending administration change in the U.S., Zhang noted the deal was agreed to a longstanding timetable. "During last year's China-EU summit," he recalled, "leaders of the two sides agreed to conclude the negotiation by the end of 2020."

Furthermore, Zhang insisted the deal was about the two partners involved, but that further deals with other parties would be welcomed. 

"This is a victory of free trade and a win-win cooperation," he said. "And the investment agreement is not only beneficial to China and the EU, but also conducive to global recovery. It's good news for all sides and for economic globalization. 

"The agreement is about investment cooperation, not a geopolitical instrument that targets or undermines the interests of a third party. China's door is open, open to all. We are keen to develop closer economic ties with all parties."

Indeed, for Zhang, this deal is typical of the sort of multilateralism that can help the world overcome its problems more easily and equitably than protectionism. 

"We need to coordinate the COVID-19 response and ensure vaccines are fairly distributed as a global public good," he said. "We need to jointly promote global recovery and to uphold an open environment for trade and investment. 

"We need to step up green and digital cooperation and jointly address global challenges like climate change. We need to promote the cooperation and multilateral frameworks like the UN, G20, WTO and WHO. Together, China and the EU can make a big difference for the wellbeing of mankind."

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