A range of important issues, including international cooperation on terrorism, migration and human rights, and the current South China Sea dispute, were discussed at the EU-China summit held on 12 and 13 July 2016.
However, the most important issue discussed was, without a doubt, the overproduction of steel, in particular in the context of the debate on market economy status for China. This is an issue that is of crucial importance to European businesses, as it has been estimated that granting China market economy status could knock as much as 2% off EU GDP and place 3 million jobs under threat. This is because the market could no longer be protected against an influx of cheap goods sold at dumping prices. The industries most at threat include steel, ceramics, aluminium, paper, glass, chemicals and environmental protection.
The time limit for bringing China’s economy into line with free-market principles, as provided for in the country’s Protocol of Accession to the World Trade Organisation, comes to an end in December 2016. In this connection, what conclusions have been reached following the EU-China summit with regard to granting China market economy status, and how does the Commission plan to settle the issue of Chinese overproduction of steel?