Monday, April 13, 2020

European leader calls for reducing dependence on Chinese goods of critical importance

A Member of the European Parliament has strongly urged Europe to produce enough goods of critical importance in order to reduce "excessive dependence on China." The remarks from Urmas Paet came as Europe continues to grapple with China-originated coronavirus. 




"The current crisis has shown that the European Union must be able to produce enough goods of critical importance on its own, even if it costs a little more than what is made in China," ERR News quoted Paet as saying on social media.

Underlining how a pandemic cripples the supply-chain system, the Estonian leader particularly emphasised on Europe's dependence on Chinese medical protective equipment.It may be noted that as coronavirus crisis heightened in Europe, perishing hundreds of people, Beijing sold medical equipment to various European countries like Italy, Spain and Czech Republic.These Chinese face masks, ventilators, protective gears, test kits were later found to be faulty, thereby putting lives at stake besides adding insult to the injury.

"Europe found itself in a situation of being vitally dependent on Chinese medical protective equipment production," wrote Paet, who served as Estonia's foreign minister from 2005 to 2014.

The continent has been hit hard by the outbreak of the virus and became an epicentre of the Covid-19 pandemic, claiming thousands of lives in just few days.

"We now need to rethink here in Europe what is included among such products of critical importance, regarding which we must not depend on third countries. Definitely at the top of the list are medical supplies and medicinal products. But quite a bit more, too," Paet suggested.The leader also highlighted how 'dishonest techniques' were used in the middle of the pandemic. -- PTI


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