Foreign Ministry says China's confidence in EU 'has not changed'
BEIJING - Reuters
AP photoChina's Foreign Ministry said on Friday it hoped measures decided by European Union leaders to seal a new fiscal pact ensuring tougher budget discipline would stabilize markets and boost confidence.
China's confidence in the EU's ability to surmount the crisis "has not changed", ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a daily news briefing.
"The EU leaders' meeting will table an important decision, and we hope the measures in question will be able to stabilise the market, boost confidence and promote the integration of the European Union," Hong said.
China has always supported "Europe's efforts to address the sovereign debt crisis", he added.
"We are willing to work with the international community to stabilise the international financial markets and promote global economic recovery and development," Hong said.
"We're still awaiting the final outcome of the meeting. We have always stated that China has always had confidence that the EU has the ability and the wisdom to resolve the problems related to the temporary difficulties it currently faces, and that stance has not changed."
EU leaders agreed stricter budget rules for the euro zone on Friday, but failed to secure changes to the EU treaty among all 27 member states, meaning a deal will instead have to involve just euro zone states and any others that want to join.
As the owner of the world's largest foreign exchange reserves, China is one of the few governments with pockets deep enough to buy a sizeable portion of European government debt and help pull the region from its economic malaise.
Proponents of this argument say China would help itself if it were to help the euro zone, because it would allow Beijing to diversify its reserves from the dollar and foster economic growth in China's biggest export market.
But China has been cool to such propositions and has not committed publicly to contributing to Europe's bailout fund, despite being courted by the fund's chief last month.