New study: Climate should be top priorities in Europe’s relationship with China

Citizens of six European countries, including Denmark, believe climate and climate change should be top priorities in Europe’s relationship with China, media NordJyske reports.

The study from YouGov, conducted on behalf of the think tank E3G shows that citizens of Denmark, France, Germany, Poland, Italy, and the United Kingdom are concerned about Chinese coal-fired plants and that China does not build more and close existing plants.

72 percent of the surveyed citizens of the six countries believe that the climate should be a very high or rather high priority compared to China. The study also shows that if you ask what should have “very high priority”, the climate is 40 percent. Trade, which is traditionally high on the agenda of European countries, stands at just 18 percent.

The answers from Denmark are broadly in line with the other countries. More than 80 percent of the respondents in Denmark believe that stopping coal-fired power plants in China should have a “very high or rather high priority”.

According to the citizens, the same high priority should be given to European countries trying to stop support for new coal-fired power plants and the continued deforestation.

A spokesman for the EU foreign minister confirmed last week that the report was complete. It has been sent to the EU Member States. However, it is not public.

The report also expresses great concern about Chinese President Xi Jinping’s “authoritarian shift” in terms of trade. China is not opening up its markets as the EU wants and according to the EU, far too much state aid is given to companies in China.

Chinese acquisitions in the EU are according to the report also a concern.
EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager is expected to address the issue regarding foreign investment in the EU next week.

About Mette Larsen

ScandAsia Journalist • Scandinavian Publishing Co., Ltd. • Thailand

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