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Europe – Asia Center

Europe – Asia Center: High-Level Visit of the China Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries

Brussels, May 11th, 2024

On Friday, 10th of May, a high-level delegation from the Europe-Asia Center, led by its two Co-Chairs, the former UN Undersecretary General H.E. Erik Solheim and former Ambassador to the UN H.E. Jean de Ruyt, and including former UNESCO Director General H.E. Irina Bokova, Vice-Chair Sheila Arora, Vice-Chair Wei Shen, Secretary-General Rui Yan, and Programme Coordinator Jonathan Schwestka, visited the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFCC), one of the major foreign affairs organizations of the People's Republic of China.

The meeting was held in an idyllic venue in the heart of Beijing, providing a perfect backdrop for the day's events. Amidst a convivial atmosphere, both parties engaged in candid discussions concerning the present state of EU-China relations, thoroughly examining challenges and exploring pathways for positive change. Emphasizing the importance of avoiding the securitization of trade and investment, they reaffirmed their commitment to cooperation aimed at nurturing mutual understanding and trust between China and Europe.

The exchange of ideas and perspectives was frank and honest, and underscored the mutual desire to build stronger ties, as well as highlighted the potential for collaborative efforts in addressing global challenges. Both the Europe-Asia Center and CPAFCC recognized the value of such high-level exchanges in fostering long-term, positive relationships between the two regions.

At the end of the meeting, Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator at the Europe-Asia Center, noted: "Engaging in these dialogues and keeping open channels of communication is akin to tending a garden; it requires consistent effort and care, but the results are worth it. By exploring strategies for positive change together, we can cultivate a landscape of mutual respect and understanding, ensuring a fruitful future for both Europe and China."

For press enquiries:

Jonathan Schwestka, Project Coordinator, Europe – Asia Center


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