The conclusion of the EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) seems to have achieved the EU’s negotiating objectives of market access, fair competition, and sustainable development, while investment protection negotiations shall be concluded within two years after the signature of the agreement.
However, the CAI has been fiercely criticised on the grounds of the EU’s own value-based trade relations, and is said to threaten the transatlantic relationship at a time when the EU is gearing up to launch its value-based cooperation agenda with the Biden Administration.
Is the CAI conclusion a moment of truth for the EU’s Open Strategic Autonomy? What tangible benefits would result from deeper and broader market access in China? Regarding enforcement of such a treaty, how can we ensure that China ratifies the fundamental ILO conventions on forced labour? Lastly, how can State-Owned Enterprises conduct and industrial subsidy transparency be enforced effectively?
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