Belt and Road: Are Chinese Investments Welcomed in Europe? Belgium is Drawing a Win-Win Strategy


Belgium is ready to host the first EU Cross border E-commerce Forum.  Cross-border is showing us how China and EU have huge space and potential for exchanges and cooperation



East Europe, Germany and other European countries are ready to embrace a new cooperation with China. During her visit in Wuhan, Hebei Province, German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Chinese Premier Li Keqiang that Germany remained open to business even as Europe governments raise barriers to investments in sensitive areas. Angela Merkel also added her goal is for trade relations with China to be an example for multilateral trade amid tensions in the global order. She cited the “urgency” of clenching an investment accord by the second half of 2020.


©Cifnews雨果网. The first edition of the EU CBEC FORUM will focus on the best ways to engage with China in the Cross-Border E-commerce context.


That’s when Germany plans to host a an EU-Chinese leaders’ summit. However, it is not only Germany that seeks more commercial relations with China. In August the Chengdu transport authorities announced the launch of a new railway line connecting Sichuan province to Budapest, Hungary, while the Chongqing municipality is witnessing an impressive growth in the number of freight train journeys to the EU in the last six months. 

Moreover, according to Zhengzhou customs data, there was the supervision of 539 China-Europe freight trains in the first six months of 2019, with an increase of 90.5% over the previous year. These trains carried 230,000 tons of goods worth $ 1.57 billion. By the way, following BRI, Belgium was the first country in Europe to draw a new win-win cooperation with China.


Last April, China-Wallonia freight train for cross-border e-commerce left for Liege, Belgium. Beijing is ready with Brussels to strengthen the cooperation.


What is the signal from Europe? EU countries are ready to cooperate with Beijing and Chinese investments are more than welcomed. In this framework, not only Germany and East Europe are benefiting of Belt and Road, but Belgium already set model for China-EU cooperation. Beijing is ready with Brussels to strengthen the cooperation between two countries and exchanges at all levels.

For example, the China-Europe freight train for cross-border e-commerce finally departed from Zhengzhou, capital of Central China’s Henan province, last March. The train, named “Cainiao”, left Zhengzhou for Liege, Belgium, the natural gateway between east and west in the heart of Europe. That’s why the Walloon city was chosen to held the first EU-China Cross-Border E-commerce Conference. 


China-belgium relations - block train - liège-zhengzhou - cifnews

©Awex. Pierre-Yves Jeholet, Vice-Président of Walloon government, and Mr. Jinping He, Vice Governor of Henan Province, launch the new Europe-China block train route between Liège (Belgium) and Zhengzhou (China).


The new route was officially launched last year during the occasion of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the twinning between the Walloon Region and Henan Province. That day an official delegation led by Vice-Governor He Jinping of Henan Province was invited by her counterpart Pierre-Yves Jeholet, Vice-President of the Walloon Government, and the Wallonia Export-Investment Agency (AWEX), to visit Wallonia with the aim of strengthening the close friendship and the collaboration between the two regions.

Belgium is a reliable partner of China in Europe. Last year in October, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Belgium to strengthen cooperation between Brussels and Beijing. His tours come amid China’s efforts to boost economic and trade ties with Europe against the backdrop of rising unilateralism and protectionism in the world. 


China and Belgium decided to upgrade their relations to an all-round partnership of friendship and cooperation during President Xi’s state visit to Belgium in 2014.


Belgium was the first Western country to provide China with interest-free loans and also the first country to establish an industrial cooperation fund with China. In November 2004, China-Belgium Direct Equity Investment Fund, the first industrial investment fund between the two, was established. Bank of China and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China opened branches in Brussels in 2011.



The reinforced cooperation between China and the EU as well as between China and EU member states will add more positive factors to global stability and development as well as inject more positive energy into the recovery of the world economy. Now Belgium is ready to host the first EU Cross border E-commerce Forum. EU CBEC FORUM will  focus on the best ways to engage with China in the Cross-Border E-commerce context, in order to fully take advantage of the opportunities offered by both Europe and China. 

This event, launched thanks to the cooperation between Cifnews雨果网 and AWEX, wants to become the first and most prominent platform on cross-border e-commerce in Europe where all the players can meet and exchange ideas, find new partners, share experiences and grow their network in this fast-changing global environment. 


Do you want to be among the cross-border e-commerce leaders?

EU CBEC Forum is waiting for you.





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