France, EU vow ‘paradigm shift’ on China policyReading Time: < 1 minute
French Trade Minister Franck Riester said the EU will resolutely back Lithuania in its escalating trade war with China, on Sunday, Euractiv reported.
Riester underlined that the small Baltic nation was “a victim of coercion from Beijing” after meeting his opposites numbers in Marseille. As the current holder of the EU’s rotating presidency, France will help to fast-track plans to give the bloc new combative powers, Euractiv added, quoting an AFP report.
The EU’s diplomatic relations with China have been negatively impacted by the bloc voicing concerns over the plight of the Uighur minority in China. Riester also called China’s recent delisting of Lithuanian goods in retaliation for the Baltic country recognising Taiwan “clear coercion”, before he met other EU trade ministers in Marseille.
The European Commission has already filed a case at the World Trade Organization, Euractiv noted.
Riester described the EU’s tougher strategy on China a “paradigm shift” in EU trade policy that “for too long” saw free trade as an end in itself.