As US retreats, EU and China seek climate leadership at

As US retreats, EU and China seek climate leadership at

As US retreats, EU and China seek climate leadership at

Hours later, President Trump is expected to announce the withdrawal of the USA from the Paris climate agreement.

According to DW, Merkel reportedly gave Li her backing for a free-trade deal between the European Union and China, but pointed out that an investment deal would be a precondition to any future trade talks.

Withdrawing would leave the USA as one of just three countries outside the agreement, with the other two being Syria and Nicaragua.

The Chinese premier is also scheduled to meet German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

The EU has also decided on a new methodology to calculate dumping, which, in effect, will circumvent a previous obligation that stems from China's membership of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to treat China as a "market economy" 15 years after joining.

"China will stand by its responsibilities on climate change", he told reporters in Berlin, according to a German translation.

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He added: "Fighting climate change is a global consensus, it's not invented by China. and we realize that this is a global consensus agreement and that as a big developing nation we should shoulder our worldwide responsibility".

"This is the basis for a sea change in global power", said analysts at High Frequency Economics.

"China has gone through a profound transformation, moving from climate "bad-boy" to climate leader in an era of Trump", Li Shuo of Greenpeace China said at an event in Brussels on Wednesday. The pact sets a target of holding the global average rise in temperature below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, and preferably below 1.5 degree Celsius.

Though China's stance has changed little, its diplomatic position was enhanced first in Paris, where joint pledges made by Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping helped push the deal over the line, and now by its efforts to keep the Paris agreement in play in the face of USA opposition.

"The summit is likely to give serious signals that it is important to uphold binding rules in a multilateral trading system", a senior European Union official said.

The EU supports the WTO obligations and is committed to seeking solutions in line with the rules, Merkel said, adding that the solutions should offer equal treatments to all countries and treat Chinese enterprises in a non-discriminatory way.

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For the Bundesrepublik, China has always been an important trading partner.

As the United States begins the process of withdrawal, a joint EU-China statement on Friday underscored the commitments of both sides to the Paris accord and to "strengthen efforts over time" to combat climate change.

Calling China and Germany a golden pair of innovation cooperation, Li said such a partnership has put a high-powered engine to China-Germany pragmatic cooperation.

She added that Germany is willing to work with China to make joint contributions to the building of an open global economy as well as the maintenance of free trade.

Germany is the first stop for Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on a European tour that comes amid growing concern in Germany over some of Trump's policies, especially on climate change and protectionism. Li and a major Chinese delegation are due to arrive in Brussels late Thursday following talks in Berlin.

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