With the European Union surpassing the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to become China’s largest trading partner in the first two months of the year, the China-EU trade demonstrates resilience and vitality, but it will take some more time to figure out if the EU can hold the top spot over the long term, said Gao Feng, Spokesman for China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM).
During the January-February period, bilateral trade between China and the EU surged 14.8% year-on-year to reach USD137.16 billion, USD570 million more than the ASEAN-China trade value. China and the EU also achieved a record USD828.1 billion in bilateral goods trade last year. “China is willing to join hands with the EU to proactively promote the liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment, safeguard the stability and smooth operations of industrial and supply chains, and jointly elevate China-EU economic and trade cooperation to benefit enterprises and people of both sides,” Gao said.
He added that the implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement in Malaysia will further boost trade and investment cooperation between China and Malaysia, and benefit enterprises and consumers of both countries as the two countries deliver on their market openness commitments and apply RCEP rules in various areas. China and Malaysia have been important trading partners for years. China is the largest trading partner of Malaysia. Data from the Chinese side showed bilateral trade value was worth USD176.8 billion in 2021, up 34.5% year-on-year. Chinese exports to Malaysia grew about 40% to USD78.74 billion while its imports surged about 30% to USD98.06 billion.