BEIJING, September 13 (TMTPOST)— A senior official of the German government confirms a recent report about its turning away from China even Beijing warned such new trade attitude would hurt the largest economy in Europe amid the deepening energy crisis exaggerated by Russian gas halt.
Source: Visual China
While admitting China’s role as a welcome trading partner, Berlin is working on a new trade policy to cut reliance on raw materials, batteries and chips from China, Robert Habeck, Germany’s Vice Chancellor and economy minister, said in an interview with Reuters on Tuesday. The minister noted his country will have "no more naivety" in trade with China, underlining its aim to prevent itself from distortion due to Beijing’s trade protection.
Habeck didn’t specify the trade measures German intended to adopt. His remark came days after Reuters’ citing sources about Germany’s economy ministry was considering a series of measures to make business with China less attractive. According to the sources last week,these measures could include reducing or even scrapping investment and export guarantees for China and no longer promoting trade fairs and manager training in China.
If what was reported is true, such new measures are “simply illogical and make no sense”, which would not bring any good to Germany’s own economy or practical cooperation with China, Mao Ning, a spokesperson of China’s Foreign Ministry commented last Friday. Mao stressed that China will not change its determination to pursue high-level opening-up, share development opportunities with the world. China hope Germany will adopt a rational and practical policy, support greater two-way opening-up and help build an open world economy, instead of shooting itself in the foot, Mao added.
A study of the German Economic Institute (IW) last month showed both Germany’s direct investment and trade deficit with China set new heights. In the first half of 2022, German imports from China increased 45.7% from a year earlier, while direct German investments in China reached around EUR10 billion (US$10 billion), well above the previous peak half year recorded since the turn of the millennium of EUR6.2 billion, IW found. The German economy is much more dependent on China, which moving a wrong direction for it created a political problem as China’s stance on the Ukraine war and its hardening attitude toward Taiwan pose threat to German business, warned Juergen Matthes, author of the study.