China's success of core interest to Europe: EU leader
Updated: 2012-10-19 21:32
BRUSSELS - China's success came in accordance with Europe's core interest, said Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council on Friday.
The European Union (EU) should "take a step back and look at the long term" development in the relationship with China, said Van Rompuy at a press conference following the EU summit jointly with Jose Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission.
"I debriefed the European Council on the recent Summit held in September with China," he said.
"In a long term's perspective, it is in Europe's core interest that China succeeds," he added.
Van Rompuy said the EU would come back to the issue early next spring to best prepare for the next EU-China summit which will take place in China in Autumn 2013.
According to Barroso, the EU leaders had a very important discussion on their strategic relationship with China during the two-day EU autumn summit that ends on Friday.
"A mutually beneficial relation with China is central for European Union and China's prosperity," he said, adding that such relations would also benefit the whole world.
Barroso said that the EU was already China's biggest trading partner and China the EU's second and fastest-growing partner. "But there is scope to do more, much more indeed, on services and investment," he added.
According to Barroso, the EU's trade on services is ten times less than its trade on goods, and the EU's investments in China add up to less than 2 percent of its total FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) stocks abroad.
"This is why we are working on an investment agreement with China," Barroso said, "we will continue our comprehensive work on how best to engage with China in a different number of areas in this important moment."