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What China-Switzerland FTA brings about?

2013-05-25 13:26 Xinhua     Web Editor: Gu Liping comment

China and Switzerland on Friday concluded their talks over a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA), which will be the first between Beijing and continental Europe.

The achievement was hailed as a "milestone" by political leaders and business community, while Swiss media described it as one of the most important international deals in 40 years for Switzerland.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, who is on an official visit to Switzerland, said the FTA will not only benefit the two countries but also the trade between China and the European Union as well as global investment and trade liberalization.


Statistics showed that two-way trade between China and Switzerland exceeded 30 billion U.S. dollars in 2011, a record increase of 50 percent compared with that of 2010. Despite the persistent eurozone sovereign debt crisis and uncertainties in the world economy, bilateral trade volume remained as high as 26.3 billion dollars last year.

China is already Switzerland's third major trading partner behind the EU and the United States, while Switzerland is China's seventh largest trading partner in Europe.

Chinese Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng said the completion of free trade talks is a historic event in bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

 Premier Li Keqiang's First Overseas Trip

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