BRUSSELS, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- The European Commission (EC) said Tuesday that the upcoming economic and trade talks with China would be an important opportunity to improve their economic and trade relations.
The EC and China will "continue their close working relationship with the fourth High Level Economic and Trade Dialogue (HED) taking place on Oct. 24 in Brussels," the EC said in a statement on its website.
The HED offers an opportunity to discuss strategic issues in the EU-China economic and trade relationship, said the EC.
Acording to EC Vice-President in charge of economic and monetary affairs Olli Rehn, the meeting would be an opportunity for the EU and China to better "understand each other's perspectives and problems."
Established by EU and Chinese leaders in 2007, the HED is a key mechanism for managing cooperation and competition between the two economies.
EU and Chinese official would discuss macro-economic challenges facing the international economy, future sources of growth, industrial policy questions as well as trade and investment issues, and customs cooperation, said the EC.
The HED represents an opportunity to discuss ongoing reforms as well as the need for continued bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the G20 and elsewhere, according to the statement.
The dialogue will also prepare the forthcoming EU-China Summit scheduled in November, where the negotiations for an investment agreement are expected to be launched, the EC said.
China and the EU are each other's major trading partners. EU official figures showed China's bilateral trade in goods with the EU had gone from 4 billion euros (about 5.5 billion U.S. dollars) in 1978 to 432 euros billion in 2012.
However, investment flows show vast untapped potential. EU figures showed just 2 percent of overall European investments abroad goes to China, while in 2012 Chinese investments into the EU only counted for 2.2 percent of total foreign direct investment flows into the EU.
On Oct. 18, the European Commission got green light to negotiate an investment agreement with China to further promote investment relations between the two sides.