VILNIUS – The European Union vows to launch an assistance measure for Lithuanian businesses affected by China's economic sanctions, European Commissioner for Internal Market Thierry Bretonu said in Vilnius on Friday.
„We believe that what China is doing is of course not compatible with the rules and the WTO rules. But beyond this case, we are also yet to use the single market as a solidarity instrument to companies that are losing shares in their business. And of course we are a huge single market and this is something also that we will initiate to help of course companies in this period," Breton told a press conference on Friday. "We will only succeed if we are united as 27of us, and we will make sure that this action on one country of the EU is an action against the single market."
Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte is optimistic about the EU's chances in the China dispute.
"We view the possibilities in this dispute favorably, and we consider ourselves to be the right side. Otherwise, the European Commission would have not even started this dispute," the prime minister told the joint press conference.
In late January, the EU launched a WTO case against the People’s Republic of China by officially requesting consultations over China's trade practice the EU deems discriminatory against Lithuania over its position on Taiwan.
Lithuanian-Chinese relations soured after a Taiwanese representative office was opened in Vilnius under the island's name. Experts say the name in Chinese sounds like it is Taiwan's representative office, and Beijing views that as Taiwan's attempt to act as an independent country.