Nordic countries agree on China's market economy status

Author: Release date:2016-05-04 00:00:00Source:+Add to My Favorites

Participants of Fudan China-Europe Forum organized by Fudan University and the University of Copenhagen have discussed on regional integration on Friday. [Provided to China Daily]

The five Nordic countries generally hold the same position as Denmark to give China market-economy status, but it is up to individual countries to decide and not the Nordic Council of Ministers, according to Dagfinn Hoybraten, secretary-general of the council.

"I think, in general, it is the Nordic policy toward that way (recognizing China's market-economy status) but it is a question for individual governments to address," Hoybraten told China Daily in Copenhagen on April 29 at the Europe-China Forum organized by Fudan University and Copenhagen University.

Denmark supported the recognition of China's full-market economy status after President Xi Jinping met Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen on March 31 at the sidelines of the global nuclear security summit in Washington.

The Nordic Council of Ministers is responsible for policy coordination between Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, which has already signed a free-trade agreement with China.

Hoybraten is scheduled to visit China at the end of May to attend the Shanghai Forum, organized by Fudan University. Last week's forum in Copenhagen was an annual event of the Fudan-European Center for China Studies, a joint initiative of Fudan University and the University of Copenhagen to meet a growing demand for China-Europe exchanges.

Whether to give China market-economy status at the end of this year after 15 years of a transitional period of China joining the World Trade Organization is testing EU-China relations.

Beijing said China should be automatically given such treatment in line with its WTO accession agreements. Yang Yanyi, Chinese ambassador to the EU, said recently that China trusts the EU's political wisdom and looks forward to the EU's timely compliance with the WTO agreement and recognition of China's market-economy status.

"Such a constructive move will strengthen an open and reliable bilateral economic environment, boost trade and investment and reduce trade frictions," said Yang.

The EU has launched its "approval process" by asking for public consultations, a European Commission assessment and European Parliament voting while many member states such as the UK and Germany have agreed to give China such treatment.

Analysts have expressed concern that the EU's approach instead of granting China such status automatically may make the process complicated and damage bilateral relationships.




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