History of the Delegation for relations with the People's Republic of China (D-CN)

EU relations with China were formally established in 1975. After the first direct elections for the European Parliament were held in 1979, the Parliament established its Delegation for relations with the People's Republic of China (D-CN).

The main task of the delegation is to develop links with China's National People's Congress (NPC), including through inter-parliamentary meetings. Formal EU-China inter-parliamentary meetings have been held since 1980.

The delegation also serves as the Parliament's main point of contact for the Legislative Councils of the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau.

Finally, the EU Chamber of Commerce in China is in regular contact with the delegation, as are representatives of the Chinese Mission to the EU, European diplomats and academics.

The EU-China relationship

The EU and China agreed on a "Strategic Partnership" in 2013. This defined four areas of focus: peace and security, prosperity, sustainable development, and people-to-people exchanges.

The EU and China are in ongoing negotiations on a Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI).

The two partners hold annual summits, as well as regular political, trade and economic dialogues. There are more than 60 thematic dialogues held with senior officials.


In the Parliament's 7th legislative term, which ran from 2009 to 2014, the delegation visited Hubei, Sichuan, Guangdong and Guangxi provinces, as well as Beijing, Hong Kong and Macao.

In addition to the Chinese visitors who attended inter-parliamentary meetings in Europe, the delegation welcomed a number of high-level officials, including
  • the Chinese Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs
  • a delegation from the Party School of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party
  • the President of China (in 2014).


During the Parliament's 8th term, visitors to the European Parliament included:

  • Mr LI Jinjun, Vice-Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party Central Committee (5 November 2014, Brussels)
  • A delegation of Tibetan Deputies of the National People's Congress (3 December 2015, Brussels)
  • Mr Qiangba Puncog, Vice-Chairman of the National People's Congress (3 May 2016, Brussels)
  • A delegation of four Members of the National People's Congress, led by Mr Xiaochu WANG, Vice-Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the NPC, for the 40th inter-parliamentary meeting (15-16 November 2017, Strasbourg)

The Parliament's China delegation has also travelled several times to meet counterparts in China:

  • in April 2015 the delegation's Chair and Vice-Chairs visited Beijing and Hong Kong
  • in July 2015, Members of the delegation went to Beijing and Shenyang for the 37th EU-China inter-parliamentary meeting
  • in May 2016, Members of the delegation went to Beijing and Chengdu for the 39th EU-China inter-parliamentary meeting
  • in May 2018, the 41st EU-China inter-parliamentary meeting was held in Beijing
Since 2019

  • Mr LIN Jih-Jia, Secretary General of the Taiwan Legislative Yuan (15-16 July 2019, Strasbourg)
  • Delegation from the Xizang (Tibet) Autonomous Region, led by NPC Members from Tibet (14 October 2019, Brussels)
  • Study tour of Hong Kong Legislative Council Officials Ms Clara TAM, Assistant Legal Adviser in Legal Service Division and Ms Joanne MAK, Chief Council Secretary in Council Business Division 2 (16-18 October 2019, Brussels)