China to stick on path of reform and opening up its markets

China Charm Offensive in Former Soviet Bloc As Trump Trade War Declared

China will open its door wider to foreign products as free trade needs to be firmly upheld to ensure sustained global economic growth, Li told a summit of eastern European leaders in Sofia.

Li, China's No 2 leader behind President Xi Jinping, spoke in Sofia, the Bulgarian capital, during a meeting with 16 countries from central and eastern Europe, amid escalating trade battles between the USA and China.

China has promised billions of dollars for development projects in central and eastern Europe as part of its Belt and Road strategy to carve out new export markets.

'Significantly reducing the import tariffs for daily consumer goods is conducive to expanding China's opening-up and serves as a major measure and action of the country's initiative to open its market, ' the Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council said.

Beijing earlier accused Washington of triggering the "largest-scale trade war".

China and the 16 countries at the summit "need to carefully study how our cooperation can fit in with the European Union laws and regulations", Li said.

"The key questions during that time are what will happen to financial markets, how will United States voters react and will China's economy start to wobble", Prof Kennedy said.

On a British beach found a flock of drunk seagulls
It is also thought possible that the gulls have scoffed grain by-products from a brewery in the area. It advised vets coming across gulls with beer symptoms to give them a chance to sleep it off.

The escalating fight between the USA and China meant that it could "take economic and political pain to get these two parties to the (negotiating) table", said Professor Scott Kennedy at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.

Mindful of the need to keep relations with the EU on an even keel as his trade battles with U.S. President Donald Trump intensify, Li has been careful to stress China's support for European integration and rules in trade and procurement.

China and some of the 16 countries at the summit signed memorandums and agreements on economic cooperation and other issues.

On how to further push the mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Germany in the future, Shi believed the two sides should promote pragmatic cooperation in at least three areas - in further opening up to each other, strengthening cooperation in science and technology, and exploring new areas of cooperation.

In addition, China is interested in the use of the existing nuclear equipment for peaceful purposes, Keqiang said in an obvious reference to the equipment manufactured by Russia's Atomstroyexport for Bulgaria's Belene nuclear power plant - an unfinished project which Bulgaria's government is set to revive.

Li also called for joint efforts to deepen exchanges in culture and education and among young people, and expressed China's readiness to encourage competitive Chinese businesses to invest in Albania for win-win results.

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