The UK’s Secretary of State Dr Liam Fox visited China last month to attend this year’s Joint Economic Trade Commission (JETCO). JETCO is an annual Ministerial-level meeting between the UK and China to discuss trade cooperation. Discussion points covered a wide range of areas including agriculture, education, professional services, creative industries, and energy.
For a summary of the areas covered during this year’s JETCO put together by the Department of International Trade’s Trade Policy Unit please see below:
- Market access successes:
- The Agri team secured further market access for dairy products sourcing ingredients from approved countries outside the UK;
- The Education team received confirmation that UK vocational training providers can establish WOFEs in China, and the responsible ministry will update their policy to reflect this;
- Agri also signed a protocol for the export of seed potatoes to China.
- Market access progress:
- Dr Fox raised the restrictive animal testing requirements for UK cosmetics on behalf of the Retail and Consumer team in a private meeting with Commerce Minister Zhong Shan, as well as during the JETCo plenary. Minister Zhong invited us to follow up with them at a working-level.
- The Professional Services team raised legal services at the Investment Working Group, and agreed to keep using the group to tackle market access concerns in the long term.
- In Energy, we raised issues from oil ceiling prices to restrictions on exploration and MOFCOM agreed to have detailed follow up discussions. We also raised issues surrounding market access for enriched uranium with China’s Atomic Energy Authority.
- In Infrastructure, we progressed an MoU between DIT and the housing ministry to help level the playing field for British architecture and engineering services firms. The aim is to sign it at either CIIE or the EFD later this year.
- Finally, in Creative, we raised the TV programme infringement issue with the State Administration for Radio and Television. Though they didn’t agree to immediate cooperation for resolving the issue, they did accept the invitation to hold the Creative Policy Dialogue with DCMS, where this issue can be further discussed, and encouraged more UK-China co-productions.
The next key UK-China policy events on the calendar are the upcoming People-to-People Dialogue, which will take place in Beijing before the end of the year (exact dates TBC but expected to be in November), and the Economic and Financial Dialogue which is scheduled for December in London. Our partners at the Department of International Trade are currently compiling lists discussion points for these meeting so if you have anything you would like to share please get in touch with our team and we can help relay it on.
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