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China, EU negotiate bilateral investment deal

China and the European Union are engaged in negotiating a bilateral investment deal, as both sides agreed to oppose protectionism and defend the global multilateral trading system, Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He said on Monday.

The two sides affirmed the positive progress achieved in the negotiations on China-EU Investment Agreement and sought to exchange the offer during the 20th China-EU Summit, Liu said at a press conference of the Seventh China-EU High-level Economic and Trade Dialogue.

The dialogue was held against a special backdrop when unilateralism and trade protectionism is on the rise and tensions appear in the economic relations between major countries, Liu said.

He said both sides agreed to firmly oppose unilateralism and protectionism and prevent such practices from impacting the world economy or even dragging the world economy into recession.

According to Liu, the two sides committed to defend the multilateral trading system that is centered on the WTO and based on rules, to promote economic globalization, to reform the multilateral trading system, and to improve the global institutions for economic governance.

Liu said all these are in great alignment with the roadmap and timetable of China's reform and opening-up drive.

China hopes that the EU will take practical measures to take substantial steps to relax export control against China, Liu added.

Vice-President of the European Commission Jyrki Katainen in his remarks urged China to ease market access restrictions and tackle the issue of steel overcapacity.