BEIJING, April 2 (Xinhua) — Despite a weak global recovery hobbled by the protracted pandemic, economic cooperation between China and the European Union (EU) has demonstrated strong resilience and vitality with deepening connections in various fields.
Official data showed China’s trade with the EU in 2021 amounted to 828.1 billion U.S. dollars, up 27.5 percent year on year, hitting a record high.
In the first two months this year, bilateral trade between China and the EU jumped 14.8 percent, year on year, to 137.1 billion U.S. dollars, making the EU the largest trading partner of China during the period, official data showed.
The Business Confidence Survey 2021, published by the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China last year, shows that since the outbreak of COVID-19, the Chinese market has become the most important haven for European enterprises.
Most surveyed European enterprises saw their profits in China above their global average, and around 60 percent of them plan to expand their business in the country.
The business performance of Chinese enterprises in European countries also defied headwinds.
According to an annual report released by the China Chamber of Commerce to the EU, Chinese enterprises recorded a total turnover of 150.3 billion euros (166.3 billion U.S. dollars) in the 27 EU member states in 2020, up 1.4 percent year on year, creating 320,000 job opportunities.
The trade of agri-food products is a vital area of China-EU cooperation. March 1 this year marked the first anniversary of the entry into force of the China-EU agreement on geographical indications, a treaty inked to improve bilateral trade of agri-food products and strengthen China-EU economic ties.
By 2021, over 240 China-EU geographical indications have been mutually recognized and protected, setting a milestone for bilateral trade ties and cooperation of intellectual property protection between the two parties.
At an online seminar on EU-China agri-food trade relations Thursday, Yu Jianhua, China’s international trade representative and vice minister of commerce, said the two sides should expand trade volume, enhance cooperation, and jointly provide a favorable environment for agri-food products trade.
As two primary markets dedicated to boosting green and digital transformation, China and Europe are also in sync with their commitments to promote low-carbon development.
Equipped with wind turbines manufactured in Denmark, Fuxin City, a former highly coal-dependent city in northeast China’s Liaoning Province, has embarked on a green development path.
After being connected to the grid, the wind turbines are expected to send about 29 million kWh of electricity to the power grid annually, saving 9,000 tonnes of standard coal and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 24,000 tonnes a year.
On the other end of the Eurasian continent, China is also helping Europe save energy and reduce emissions. Electric buses from BYD, China’s electric automaker, can be seen in more than 100 cities in more than 20 European countries, accounting for about 20 percent of the market share of European electric buses.
“China and the EU have made massive contributions to the green shift of global energy consumption and economic recovery,” Zhang Jianhua, head of China’s National Energy Administration, said at the 10th China-EU energy dialogue Thursday.
Under shifting global circumstances, both sides will further enhance cooperation and inject more positive energy into the global energy market, said Zhang.