On Dec 30, China and the European Union concluded the negotiations on the EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment. The EU went ahead with the negotiations despite the pressure the United States put on it.
While people and enterprises in both economies celebrated the occasion, some US politicians have, on various occasions, expressed their doubts about the potential agreement, even expressing "shock" at the growing proximity between China and the EU and warning that it may mean "trouble" for the incoming Joe Biden administration.
But as an European diplomat observed, the move should not be seen as offending to the incoming US administration, but rather a result of the outgoing US administration's selfish trade policies.
For years, the US and the EU have had many trade-related frictions. Especially, the US' attitude toward the World Trade Organization has angered the EU.
After 2016, unlike the US, the EU has held a positive attitude toward promoting global economic and trade cooperation and has signed a series of trade agreements with Canada, Japan, Singapore and Vietnam. It has signed 99 trade agreements in all.
Obviously, the EU is determined to pursue trade matters more independently despite Biden's attempts at mending cross-Atlantic ties.
On the one hand, the damage done by the US administration is too deep for the new president-elect to quickly mend. On the other hand, the US always wants the EU to take sides on global issues.
In order to better defend its interests, the EU must have its own standing point, which is a rational choice in a world where ideologies and geopolitics are getting more extreme. With the US' hegemony declining, China and the EU are expected to join hands to promote free trade. A better tomorrow with a different landscape will emerge. Let's look forward to it.