2016 is an important year for EU-China relations. It will mark the expiry of the 15-year transitional period following China’s accession to the WTO and therefore a number of the provisions of Section 15 of China’s WTO Accession Protocol.

This could lead to China gaining market economy status, a development which could have considerable ramifications for the EU and its trade defence instruments (TDIs). Within the EU, some countries – including the UK – view the deepening of trade relations with China in a positive light, whereas others fear that the influx of Chinese products will harm local industries and stifle job creation. Now the question is:

  • What are the key conclusions of the study on MES for China? What still needs to be done by the Chinese government to have the MES granted? Is there enough political and economic will from both sides?
  • Regarding the ongoing European steel crisis, how should the EU react to the alleged dumping measures by the Chinese government? What tools would the EU have to protect European industry from such measures once the MES is granted?
  • How would Europe benefit from China getting the MES granted?
  • What potential is there for a future trade agreement between China and the EU?

The panellists included:

  • Leopoldo Rubinacci Director of the Trade Defence Services in DG Trade, European Commission
  • Hannah Deringer Policy Analyst at the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE)
  • Iain MacVay Partner in King & Spalding’s International Trade Practice
  • Claudia Vernotti Director of ChinaEU

The discussion was moderated by Ana Gradinaru of Edelman Brussels.