Related Theme: External Relations - the rest of the world

In Asia, the European Economic and Social Committee has maintained structured relations with India and China, by operating a civil society round table with these two countries; since 2001 with India and since 2007 with China. It has recently started to develop closer relations with organised civil society in Japan.

Since 2001, at the request of the European Commission, the EESC has organised an EU-India Round Table. The political decision to set up this Round Table originated in an initiative by the then EU Commissioner for External Relations, Chris Patten and the Indian Foreign Minister of the time, Jaswant Singh. The initiative was warmly welcomed by the EESC, which was asked by Commissioner Patten to represent civil society. However since 2001, the process has been de facto suspended.

The EESC has maintained relations with its ‘counterpart’, the China Economic and Social Council (CESC), since the inception of that body in 2001. The Ninth EU-China Summit, held in September 2006 in Helsinki, acknowledged that the exchanges and cooperation between the EESC and CESC formed an integral part of the EU-China relationship and encouraged the establishment of a regular Round Table, which has been up and running since June 2007.

Events & Activities on Asia

Documents & Publications on Asia