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Hungary: EU should give China 'market economy' status

Reporter: Wu Guoxiu 丨 CCTV.com

06-10-2016 05:00 BJT

Hungarian Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Peter Szijjarto has said the EU should give China market economy status. He made the remarks as trade ministers from China and Central and Eastern European countries meet in China. A declaration was made regarding their future economic cooperation.

Trade ministers from China and 16 Central and Eastern European countries are meeting for the second time in China looking for new growth engines, as agreed in a recent declaration.

"The Ningbo Declaration considers all parties' benefits, concerns, and common sense. Core topics includes expanding the scale of trade and investment, strengthening connectivity and pushing forward SME cooperations under the 16 plus 1 mechanism," said Chinese Minister of Commerce Gao Hucheng.

China says its cooperation with the 16 countries is seeing its best time. Trade has maintained double digit growth in recent years. Investment is growing even faster, highlighting projects in power, telecoms, basic infrastructures. Minster Gao says China has benefited from the cooperation too.

"Chinese consumers are getting familiar with Central and Eastern European specialty products. We had big improvements in our machine manufacturing, space, high-tech and agricultural products trade," said Gao.

Hungary is a guest at this meeting. It's one of China's largest trade partners and investment destinations in the region. As an EU member, the Hungarian trade minister says the EU should give "Market Economy" status to China. This refers to an ongoing debate in the EU, on whether the bloc will stop using a catalogue country system, in anti-dumping reviews on China's exports. Under that system, importers use the cost of product in a third country to define the normal value of exports from a non-market economy.

"We think that China must be provided with the "Market Economy" status. We will represent this in the Foreign Affairs Union when decisions to come. We understand European countries are eager to build economic and trade cooperation with China, it's everyone's interest to develop economic and trade cooperations. And this cooperation must be built on mutual respect and mutual trust," said Peter Szijjarto, Minister of Foreign Affairs & Trade, Hungary.

China calls for WTO members to stop adopting such practices before December 11th this year, as stipulated by WTO regulations.Beijing says respect for international trade rules is especially important when the global economy is slowing down, and when countries are joining hands to improve trade performances.

Trade ministers from China and Central and Eastern European countries meet every other year to map out their cooperation plans under the one belt one road framework. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang will attend a leaders meeting Latvia later this year. The host country is hoping it will promote greater trade and economic opportunities.

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