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Major deals to be signed in day 2 of Macron’s visit to China

By AFP | Published Tue, January 9th 2018 at 10:47, Updated January 9th 2018 at 10:55 GMT +3
French President Emmanuel Macron in China for economic talks. [Photo: Courtesy]

After advocating a new alliance between France, Europe and China, Emmanuel Macron devoted Tuesday the second day of his state visit to China to economic issues, with the expected signing of fifty agreements and contracts, especially on civil nuclear and aeronautics.

More generally, France seeks to "rebalance" its trade relations with China, which generates its largest external deficit (30 billion euros in 2016) and calls for greater reciprocity in the opening of markets.

During this visit, Paris hopes to obtain better access to the Chinese market for its agricultural and agro-food products (beef, pork, poultry, wines and spirits) as well as for its banks, to conclude sales of Airbus and Safran engines and especially advance on a mega-contract for Areva on the supply of a plant for reprocessing radioactive waste.

The Franco-Chinese negotiations continued until the last moment, while the signing of contracts, in the presence of Mr. Macron and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, is scheduled for 16:30 local (08:30 GMT).

Emmanuel Macron arrived in China with about fifty business leaders including the leaders of Areva, Airbus, Safran and EDF.

In return, Paris wants to encourage Chinese investment in France, "as long as they create jobs and growth for our countries and they are part of balanced and long-term partners", according to the Elysium.

These investments continue to increase (6 billion euros at the end of 2016, including those of Hong Kong) but remain below the French investments in China (33 billion euros).

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"The partnership with China is a strategic partnership, we need to structure relations in terms of intellectual property, structure greater access to the Chinese market, allow Chinese investments in France and open data reciprocally," said the chief of the French state.

He took the opportunity to witness the signing of a contract with the Chinese online sales giant who has committed to sell on its platforms for 2 billion euros of French products to Chinese consumers over the next two years, while being ready to set up in France.

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