EU okays aid to Lithuanian firms hurt by China spat

BRUSSELS (AFP) – The EU on Tuesday (April 26) accredited state aid to Lithuanian corporations affected by China’s “discriminatory” commerce boundaries in a row over Taiwan.

Lithuania has attracted bitter retaliation from China after Taiwan was allowed to open a de facto embassy in Vilnius. Beijing staunchly rejects any worldwide help for the island’s claimed sovereignty.

The European Commission stated it accredited 130 million euros (S$190.80 million) in monetary help for “the exceptional circumstances resulting from China’s discriminatory trade restrictions on Lithuania”, an announcement stated.

The EU alleges that Lithuania is a sufferer of commerce coercion from Beijing and has taken the case to the World Trade Organisation.

Lithuania’s struggle with China started when a newly opened mission from Taiwan in Vilnius explicitly referred to the self-ruled democratic island as a substitute of simply Taipei, its capital metropolis, as is frequent apply to placate Beijing.

In retaliation, Beijing downgraded diplomatic ties and Lithuanian exports have been stopped at China’s border, with widespread stories that European exporters have been cautioned by Beijing shoppers to reduce all ties with the nation.

Beijing claims Taiwan as its territory, however the majority of Taiwanese are not looking for Chinese rule.

Relations between Brussels and Beijing are at a low level after a failure to ratify a protracted negotiated funding deal was adopted by a spherical of tit-for-tat sanctions that was sparked by European concern for the plight of the Uighur minority in China.

The EU can also be perturbed by China’s ambiguous stance on Russia over the invasion of Ukraine and has urged Beijing to extra clearly oppose President Vladimir Putin’s warfare.

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