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Business

China, Germany ink biz contracts worth billions

China and Germany have signed a number of business deals despite the current slowdown of economic growth in the Asian nation. Visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel supported moves towards a free trade agreement.

On the fringes of

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's two-day visit to China,

the two nations on Thursday signed business contracts worth 18.6 billion euros ($20.3 billion).

Beijing gave the green light for European aviation giant Airbus to deliver 30 A330 passenger planes and 100 A320 aircraft.

Germany's embattled carmaker Volkswagen signed an agreement on close cooperation with Chinese lender ICBC.

In addition, Deutsche Börse, which operates the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, inked a collaboration deal with the Shanghai Stock Exchange and the China Financial Futures Exchange (CEFTS) with the aim of founding a joint venture.

China, EU to edge closer together

Watch video 02:21

China's stalling economic growth

Merkel and China's Prime Minister Li Keqiang voiced their intention to intensify cooperation in Industry 4.0 projects bringing together conventional industrial production with top-notch information technology.

Merkel spoke out in favor of including China's yuan currency in the IMF's Special Drawing Rights basket of the world's most important currencies.

In talks with Chinese leaders, she also supported a rapid conclusion of an investment treaty between China and the European Union. Such a treaty is a prerequisite for compiling a feasibility study on free trade talks which in turn would pave the way for an EU-China free trade zone.

hg/pad (Reuters, dpa)

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