EU-China Trade-Related Dialogues, a First Assessment

39 Pages Posted: 9 Sep 2020

See all articles by Weinian Hu

Weinian Hu

Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS)

Jacques Pelkmans

Centre for European Policy Studies

Date Written: July 2020

Abstract

EU/China bilateral trade policy is largely conducted via a myriad of ‘trade-related’ Dialogues, nearly 50. Both the sheer quantity and the scope are conspicuous. We undertake a first attempt to map and assess these EU/China Dialogues, as far as is possible given the lack of transparency and paucity of hard data. We identify seven functions of the Dialogues. Four key questions are posed: (1) can the web of bilateral Dialogues be seen as an ‘unbundled’ FTA? (not really) ; (2) can Dialogues improve or delay market access? (if not about applied tariffs, both can be found, but easier access may well dominate because of the ‘lesser restrictions’ approach via Chinese reforms stimulated via Dialogues) ; (3) can Dialogues stimulate ‘sustainable development’, both socially and in environment & climate ? (yes, in both) ; (4) can Dialogues address ‘systemic differences’ ? (surely not directly, but in roundabout ways via reforms, selectively).

Keywords: EU-China trade policy; EU-China economic cooperation; sustainable development; bilateral dialogues

Suggested Citation

Hu, Weinian and Pelkmans, Jacques, EU-China Trade-Related Dialogues, a First Assessment (July 2020). Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies Research Paper No. RSCAS 2020/46, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3688317 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3688317

Weinian Hu (Contact Author)

Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) ( email )

1 Place du Congres, 1000
Brussels, 1000
Belgium

Jacques Pelkmans

Centre for European Policy Studies ( email )

1 Place du Congres
B-1000 Brussels, 1000
Belgium

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