Germany preparing brand-new China trade policy, swears ‘no more naivety’

Germany drawing up new China trade policy, vows 'no more naivety'

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A forklift operates in the dockyard of a container maker under COSCO Shipping in Nantong, China on July 17, 2022.

Xu Congjun|Feature China|Future Publishing|Getty Images

Germany’s economy minister stated on Tuesday the federal government was dealing with a brand-new trade policy with China to decrease reliance on Chinese basic materials, batteries and semiconductors, appealing “no more naivety” in trade negotiations with Beijing.

Sources informed Reuters recently the economy ministry was thinking about a raft of brand-new steps to make service with China less appealing. This is the very first time the minister has actually explained the harder line was being equated into policy steps.

Robert Habeck informed Reuters that China was a welcome trading partner, however Germany might not permit Beijing’s protectionism to misshape competitors and would not keep back criticism of human rights offenses under risk of losing service.

“We cannot allow ourselves to be blackmailed,” he stated in an interview.

Habeck did not describe brand-new steps completely, however stated they would consist of closer evaluation of Chinese financial investments in Europe, such as facilities.

China has actually been Germany’s most significant trade partner for the previous 6 years, with volumes reaching over 245 billion euros ($246 billion) in 2021.

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But the center-left federal government is taking a harder line towards Beijing than its center-right predecessor, fretted about Germany’s reliance on Asia’s financial superpower.

On Thursday, Reuters reported the economy ministry was thinking about steps consisting of minimizing or perhaps ditching financial investment and export warranties for China and no longer promoting trade fairs.

Habeck stated Germany should open to brand-new trading partners and areas as numerous sectors were greatly based on offering to China.

“If it (the Chinese market) were to close, which is not likely at the moment … we would have extreme sales problems,” Habeck stated, including the economy ministry was adding to the brand-new German-China policy, much of which is currently in location.

“And from this you will see that there is no more naivety,” he included.

Berlin likewise wishes to take a look at Chinese financial investments in Europe more seriously, he stated, including Europe need to not support China’s Silk Road Initiative, which intends to purchase up tactical facilities in Europe and affect trade policy.

As an example, Habeck signified he was opposed to strategies by China’s Cosco to purchase a stake in a container operator at Germany’s Hafen Hamburg port, signaling issues about Chinese takeover offers are expanding from the innovation arena into other market sectors, such as logistics.

“I’m leaning towards the fact that we don’t allow that,” he stated.

China has actually not signed up with the West in enforcing sweeping sanctions on Moscow following Russia’s intrusion of Ukraine, however has actually likewise not backed Moscow’s actions as Beijing requires to preserve trade relations with Europe.