MADRID, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU) should look to China in order to take advantage of its economic strength, said Alicia Garcia Herrero, the chief economist for the Asia-Pacific Zone of the French investment bank Natixis.
Speaking at a roundtable event held at Spain's School of Industrial Organization in Madrid on Monday, Garcia Herrero said China's continued economic growth should provoke enough reasons for the EU to look to the East Asian country, although such a move would be "complicated" due to the historical and cultural ties linking Europe and the United States.
Garcia Herrero cited several economic indicators, saying that China, despite recent slowdown, has "better economic growth than the United States" and "will maintain its situation."
She underlined China's economic strength amid the U.S. position as a "creditor" in world trade, adding that China has 120 "major corporations" compared with 126 in the United States and 110 in Europe according to Natixis' data base.
Another speaker at the event, Javier Serra, the general director for business internationalization at the Spanish Institute of Foreign Trade, illustrated China's growth with the change in focus of Spanish products in the Chinese market.
"Until 2011, they only bought products used in manufacturing, with very little added value. Now the dynamic has changed and the growth in sales is centered on consumer products. Chinese society has changed radically," Serra said.
Spain is the sixth biggest trade partner of China within the EU, while China is Spain's largest trade partner outside the EU. The bilateral trade volume reached 30.94 billion U.S. dollars in 2017, up 7.5 percent year on year, according to information from the official website of China's Foreign Ministry.