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EU-China strategic partnership can s
Source: www.satmytech.com   Publish Time: 2014-03-31 23:05   3662 Views   Size:  16px  14px  12px
EU-China strategic partnership can shape global order: Van Rompuy

BRUSSELS - The comprehensive strategic partnership between the European Union (EU) and China can play an important role in shaping the global order, president of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy has said.

In an exclusive interview with Xinhua prior to the visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Brussels -- the first ever by a Chinese president to EU institutions -- Van Rompuy underlined that neither the EU nor China had the potential to solve global problems alone.

"International financial turbulences, climate change or modern information technologies do not respect national borders," Van Rompuy said. However, much could be achieved "while working constructively together for the global good," he added.

Since November 2009, Van Rompuy has served as the first full-time president of the European Council -- the EU institution comprising the heads of its member states that oversees the general political direction and priorities of the Union.

The former Belgian prime minister and economist at the National Bank of Belgium was reelected for a second term as European Council president running until November 30 this year.

A full agenda

Xi's iconic visit to the capital of the European Union, from March 31 to April 1, will have "a very full agenda, commensurate with our global responsibilities," Van Rompuy said.

The Chinese president's trip will include meetings with Van Rompuy, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and European Parliament President Martin Schulz. Topics ranging from sustainable development, G20, climate change to trade and investment relations are expected to be on the table.

"We will review the progress made in the negotiations on the bilateral investment agreement, which aim to ensure investment protection and market access for investors on both sides," Van Rompuy stated.

For the last nine years, the EU has been China's biggest economic partner. Official figures show bilateral trade in goods between China and the EU grew four-fold in a decade, reaching 434 billion euros (597 billion U.S. dollars) in 2012.

"The EU is the world's largest trading block and the biggest economy. We are thus in a unique position to promote an open global economy and an open trade and investment environment, together with China," Van Rompuy said.

During the talks, practical cooperation on security and defence issues will also be examined, such as joint naval exercises on counter-piracy in the Gulf of Aden, he said.