EU and China Sign Agreement on Investment

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After seven years of negotiations, the European Union and China have signed an agreement in principle on investments.

 

This will give European companies more comfortable access to the Chinese market and a more level playing field should be created.

It is predictable to take at least another year before the agreement takes effect. European companies will gain more access to sectors such as electric cars, private healthcare, real estate, telecom services and other industries in China.

Specific Beijing demands requiring European companies to form partnerships with Chinese companies to gain access to the country are being lifted.

China is also scrapping the mandatory transfer of technological knowledge from foreign companies to Chinese parties and has pledged to be more transparent about state subsidies to industry. Agreements have also been made about climate change and employee rights.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the union is open to equal trade with China. The European Parliament still has to agree.

Some MEPs have expressed objections to the agreement over concerns about human rights violations in China.

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