Spain addresses state of relations with China in bilateral political consultations

The State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and for Ibero-America and the Caribbean, Cristina Gallach, and the Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, Qin Gang, have held bilateral political consultations today between Spain and China They addressed the main aspects of bilateral relations, and other issues of common interest on the international agenda.

They both welcomed the fluid dialogue between the two countries in the crisis. Both the European Union and China appreciate that any potential vaccine should be considered to be an affordable global public asset for all those people who need it. The State secretary declared her concern over the travel restrictions imposed on Spanish citizens, and requested that this matter be reconsidered.

At an economic level, State Secretary Gallach underlined the need to boost investment flows in both directions. She also stressed the importance of other areas of collaboration, such as culture and Spanish language-learning.

They also addressed multilateral questions. Both parties welcomed the fact that, despite the disruption to the calendar caused by the pandemic, the annual EU-China Summit could be held on 22 June, as well as the meeting of leaders in September and dialogue in other formats. The State secretary stressed the importance of reciprocity in relations between the two countries and declared her wish that the European Union-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment can be satisfactorily finalised.

As regards the situation in Hong Kong, the State secretary reiterated her support for the principle of “one country, two systems”, for the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and for international law as the foundations for political stability and legal certainty in the territory. As regards the Xinjiang Conflict, she mentioned the importance of China allowing free access to the region by independent observers.

They also discussed other global issues of importance, such as the need to strengthen the multilateral system and the fight against climate change, with a particular mention of the COP15 on Biodiversity to be held next year and the holding of the 30th anniversary in 2021 of the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty and the Madrid Protocol. The State secretary alluded to the EU’s interest in working to this end with both China and with the new Biden Administration and other parties.

Lastly, she highlighted the roles of such organisations as the World Trade Organization and the World Health Organization in deploying effective leadership to defend global interests.





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