China, EU BIT talks gain steam Pre­mier Li praises bi­lat­eral ties with Bel­gium while in cap­i­tal

China Daily (Canada) - - TOP NEWS - By ZHANG YUE in Brus­sels zhangyue@chi­

China and the Euro­pean Union have made more ef­forts in pro­mot­ing the ne­go­ti­a­tion for a bi­lat­eral in­vest­ment treaty, Pre­mier Li Ke­qiang said.

Li made the re­mark to the press with Bel­gian Prime Min­is­ter Charles Michel in Brus­sels on Wed­nes­day. The two lead­ers had talks be­fore meet­ing re­porters.

Not­ing that the pro­posed BIT be­tween China and the EU was dis­cussed dur­ing his talks with Michel, Li said he will also dis­cuss the is­sue of ac­cel­er­at­ing BIT ne­go­ti­a­tions with EU lead­ers while at the 12th Asia-Europe Meet­ing sum­mit, which will kick off on Thurs­day.

“The treaty will help China and the EU fur­ther open to one another,” he said. He pointed out that the treaty will also con­trib­ute to forg­ing free trade and fair co­op­er­a­tion on in­vest­ment be­tween China and the EU.

China is ready to ease mar­ket ac­cess for in­vestors from Bel­gium and pro­vide them with the same treat­ment as lo­cal busi­nesses, he said.

He said that China is will­ing to fur­ther en­hance co­op­er­a­tion with Bel­gium in in­no­va­tion and high-tech­nol­ogy un­der the prin­ci­ple of pay­ing full re­spect to law and com­mit­ment from both sides.

Co­op­er­a­tion in tech­nol­ogy and in­no­va­tion as well as safe use of nu­clear en­ergy were among the top­ics of their talks, Li said.

“We be­lieve that ad­vanced tech­nolo­gies from Bel­gium will have great mar­ket po­ten­tial in China, and China will give strict pro­tec­tions to in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty,” Li said, ad­ding that the two coun­tries en­joy large po­ten­tial for co­op­er­a­tion.

China is will­ing to pro­mote its co­op­er­a­tion with the EU, through en­hanc­ing co­op­er­a­tion with Bel­gium, he said.

China is also will­ing to jointly work with Bel­gium in main­tain­ing and pro­mot­ing a rules­based in­ter­na­tional or­der and free trade, Li said.

“China is now work­ing on the pro­ce­dure of lift­ing the ban on im­ports of beef from Bel­gium, and we will ac­cel­er­ate the process,” Li said. “We are ready to ex­pand im­ports of high qual­ity agri­cul­ture prod­ucts from Bel­gium.”

Michel said that Bel­gium places high im­por­tance on de­vel­op­ing its re­la­tions with China. He said the coun­try is will­ing to en­hance co­op­er­a­tion with China in ar­eas of agri­cul­ture, en­ergy, in­fra­struc­ture and con­nec­tiv­ity, and is will­ing to en­hance com­mu­ni­ca­tion with China un­der the United Na­tions frame­work.

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