Lithuania complains about China’s trade “sanctions” after the Taiwan dispute
Lithuania said on Friday that due to the escalation of diplomatic disputes with Taiwan, China has banned imports of all products from the Baltic States.
Vilnius stated that Beijing had delisted it as the country of origin, which meant that the goods could not be cleared and refused all import applications.
After Lithuania allowed the Taiwanese representative to be opened in November, Beijing lowered its diplomatic relations with Lithuania and suspended consular services there.
China considers Taiwan to be part of its territory.
Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis (Gabrielius Landsbergis) on Friday condemned “unannounced sanctions” and said Lithuania would seek help from the European Commission. He said, “An EU member state is subject to partial sanctions, which is unprecedented.”
The country exported 300 million euros worth of goods to China in 2020, which is less than 1% of its total exports.
“We were told that Lithuanian goods were not cleared through Chinese customs and the import application was rejected. We are in contact with Vilnius and the EU delegation in Beijing to collect all possible information and clarify the situation,” the committee said.
The move came days before Brussels proposed a law that would allow it to retaliate against such economic sanctions.
this Anti-coercion instrumentThe committee agreed on Wednesday that it would allow the European Union to more quickly retaliate against U.S. measures and actions taken against companies that trade with Cuba and Iran.
However, it faces opposition from several EU member states, who fear that it may violate international rules and harm global trade. The 27 EU member states and the European Parliament must support the law before it enters into force.
Commercial lobby groups in Estonia and Japan, as well as Denmark and Sweden, have expressed public opposition. Diplomats said their government is also skeptical.
Tokyo stated that the instrument may violate the rules of the World Trade Organization, which is a concern for some EU capitals.
“As a prohibited unilateral measure, the deterrence/countermeasure itself may be potentially inconsistent with the WTO agreement,” Tokyo tells The EU negotiated on the proposal in March.
Estonia requested in its submission that “the proposed instrument must fully comply with WTO rules.” “The cornerstone of EU trade policy is its compatibility with the multilateral trading system represented by WTO rules.”
EU diplomats said Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Italy and the Czech Republic expressed concerns about the plan.
“We don’t know whether the problem is large enough to justify the proposal,” Sweden said in a letter to the committee seen by the Financial Times. “If implemented, this tool could have a significant economic impact on trade, companies, and the relationship between the EU and other countries.”