Expert says China vital for healthy multilateral system


MADRID: China is vital for a healthy multilateral system, an expert has said ahead of the upcoming meeting between China and the European Union (EU).
“It is a key actor in the global jigsaw of economic growth and for the good health of the multilateral system,” Xulio Rios, director of the Observatory of Chinese Politics in Spain, told Xinhua in a recent interview. “For the European Union, China is neither expendable nor can it be left on one side. China is a fundamental factor as we look for a fast way out of the deep global crisis which is growing around us,” Rios said. The 22nd China-EU leaders’ meeting, which will be held on Monday through video link, will be the first of its kind after the inauguration of the new EU leaders last year, and the highest bilateral meeting since the COVID-19 outbreak. Any agreement between the EU and China reached during the meeting will bring together important assets, which will not only help the two sides better recover from the epidemic, but also benefit the whole world, said Rios. The meeting will be a key moment for EU-China relations, Rios said, adding that both sides strongly believe in the need to chart a new course together in a post-pandemic world. Furthermore, it will send a message of hope to the international community, putting faith in cooperation and dialogue for the management of bilateral and global affairs, he said. Rios noted that the EU and China have shared the same visions on saving lives and maintaining the economy amid the pandemic. Both sides have signaled that the absolute priority has to be the protection of people’s health, he said, adding the two sides have also agreed on the main direction the world economy must take, with a focus on globalization and the stability of industrial and supply chains. – Agencies