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Brussels, 19 July 2013
Joint Statement on enhanced Environmental Policy Dialogue and Cooperation on Green Growth
Zhou Shengxian Minister of Environment Protection of the People’s Republic of China, and Janez Potočnik European Commissioner for Environment met in Beijing on 19 July 2013 for the EU-China Environmental Policy Dialogue.
They exchanged views on the latest progress in the field of environmental protection and acknowledged respective efforts to address key global environmental challenges.
They discussed how to properly handle the relationship between economic growth and environmental protection. Minister Zhou outlined how the concept of ecological civilisation would guide work in the new era and the three priorities of China's current environmental policy, including air pollution prevention and control with focus on control of PM2.5 , water pollution prevention and control as well as environmental protection in rural areas with drinking water safety as the focus He expressed gratitude for the effective and constructive work of the European colleagues during the visit of MEP delegation to the European Commission in early 2013 in order to exchange views on PM2.5 governance. He introduced briefly the new policy measures in order to address environmental problems in China.Commissioner Potočnik described the progress in Europe towards a resource efficient economy. He said that business and industry would largely be in the forefront in bringing about Green Growth through a resource efficient, circular economy. He noted that the European Union had clear strengths in eco-industries and this too could be an opening for further co-operation with China.
Recognising the importance of maintaining a regular policy dialogue and noting the role played by bilateral co-operation on environment in advancing the EU-China strategic partnership, they agreed to strengthen the policy dialogue and to make bilateral co-operation more pragmatic and effective by engaging and mobilising businesses to also contribute. They also agreed to improve the implementation of the existing cooperation projects including the EU- China Environmental Governance Programme, and to work together to start new projects including the EU-China Sustainability Programme.