The EU Opens the Door to More China Trade

A new bilateral deal signed this week will mostly benefit the bloc’s Western members.

After 10 years of negotiation, the European Council earlier this week authorized the EU to sign a trade agreement with China. The deal will protect geographical indications, a type of intellectual property for products like Camembert cheese from Lower Normandy and Prosecco from Veneto that possess certain qualities unique to their place of origin. The agreement will prevent these kinds of products from being produced elsewhere and sold using expressions such as “kind,” “type,” “style” and “imitation.” The deal may not sound like much; it covers just 100 products from each side, and some EU members are more represented than others on the list of products. (French goods, for example, represent a quarter of the protected products.) But it is notable that the EU, at this critical time, is laying the groundwork for a broader trade agreement with China. Indeed, the timing of the deal is interesting. It had been under negotiation for a decade, a long time even by EU standards, and it still needs approval from the European Parliament (which is mostly a formality at this point) before it can take effect. Moreover, the European Commission called China a “strategic competitor” as recently as 2019, and opinion polls […]

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Antonia Colibasanu
Antonia Colibasanu is Geopolitical Futures’ Chief Operating Officer. She is responsible for overseeing all departments and marketing operations for the company. Dr. Colibasanu joined Geopolitical Futures as a senior analyst in 2016 and frequently speaks on international economics and security topics in Europe. She is also lecturer on international relations at the Romanian National University of Political Studies and Public Administration and associate professor for the Romanian National Defense University Carol I Regional Department of Defense Resources Management Studies. Prior to Geopolitical Futures, Dr. Colibasanu spent more than 10 years with Stratfor in various positions, including as partner for Europe and vice president for international marketing. Prior to joining Stratfor in 2006, Dr. Colibasanu held a variety of roles with the World Trade Center Association in Bucharest. Dr. Colibasanu holds a Doctorate in International Business and Economics from Bucharest’s Academy of Economic Studies, where her thesis focused on country risk analysis and investment decision-making processes within transnational companies. She also holds a Master’s degree in International Project Management. She is an alumna of the International Institute on Politics and Economics at Georgetown University.