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EU: “Fair” is the key word

EU trade chief reminds that “fair” is a key word of the bloc’s free and fair trade, according to Politico.

EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis said in a speech at the Bund summit in Shanghai that the Union must be able to defend itself “when its openness is abused.”

We welcome global competition. But it must be conducted fairly.

His comments followed the Commission’s statement on the inspection of Chinese electric vehicles, as the Asian country’s exports are growing rapidly.

China is the EU’s largest trading partner and a key supplier in a number of sectors, from rare earth materials to renewable energy equipment or medical ingredients.

The Commissioner’s speech also touched on the global economic situation changed after the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine. The world, according to Dombrovskis, is switching to a new model that focuses on resilience to future shocks.

In almost every sector, arena and debate forum, we are seeing – and reading – what seems to be a whole new vocabulary: onshoring, re-shoring, near-shoring, friend-shoring, decoupling, de-globalisation.

He also noted that “the EU has no intention of decoupling from China.” Brussels focused on minimising “strategic dependence and vulnerability,” but China called it a step backwards from global trade.

Dombrovskis ended the speech by urging China to take action to provide debt relief to developing countries hit by recent interest rate hikes.

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