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2020-02-12 | All chapters

European Tour 2020 Fruitfully Concluded

From 3rd to 7th February, a European Chamber delegation consisting of the president, vice presidents and senior working group representatives joined the Chamber’s annual European Tour to Brussels. The Tour aims to bring the key messaging of the Chamber and the content of its reports -- The Road Less Travelled: European Involvement in China's Belt and Road Initiative and the European Business in China Position Paper 2019/2020  to key stakeholders in Brussels, including European institutions such as the European Commission, the European Parliament, the European Council and the Council of the EU, as well as think tanks and industry and business associations.

In order to address health-related security concerns created by the novel coronavirus outbreak in China, the Chamber closely monitored the developments day by day and accordingly took a number of exceptional measures that included limiting the composition of delegates to those that had left China before or in the early days of the Chinese New Year. While the situation in China had an impact on a number of meetings with stakeholders like the Commission, the Chamber delegates enjoyed numerous productive exchanges with a wide variety of key counterparts to ensure that the voice of European businesses in China was heard in the heart of the EU.

These include the Cabinet of Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans; the Cabinet of Commissioner Gentiloni; Acting Director-General Charlina Vitcheva (Joint Research Centre); European External Action Services Managing Director Gunnar Wiegand; Chairs of the European People’s Party, the Committee for International Trade (INTA Committee) and the Delegation to China Manfred Weber, Bernd Lange and Reinhard BütikoferVice-Chair of the INTA Committee Iuliu Winkler; Chinese Ambassador to the EU Zhang Ming; Minister Plenipotentiary at the Croatian Permanent Representation Silvija Malnar; representatives of the European Round Table of Industrialists, EUROCHAMBRES and AmCham Brussels; and representatives of think tanks like Bruegel, EPC, Friends of Europe, EIAS etc. During the visit Vice President Charlotte Roule and Policy and Communications Manager Jacob Gunter were hosted at an event by the Young China Watchers Brussels, where they presented the Chamber’s Position Paper and its latest report on the Belt and Road Initiative. The delegation also held a media roundtable for Brussels-based journalists and also had several interviews with in both print and video formats.