French President Macron Visits Forbidden City, Meets with Xi Jinping in Beijing

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French President Macron Visits Forbidden City, Meets with Xi Jinping in Beijing

Macron pointed to France's 30 billion euro ($36 billion) trade deficit with China past year and warned it was politically unsustainable.

French President Macron met with JD's Chairman and Chief Executive Richard Liu on Tuesday to explore opportunities for more French brand sales to JD's more than 260 million customers, the ecommerce company said.

Airbus, the European multinational aeronautics firm with headquarters in Toulouse, is reportedly negotiating a $10 billion deal in China.

Macron has been looking to sign billions of dollars in trade links with China, thereby making France one of the biggest trading partners in Europe.

Foreign businesses in China though have grown more pessimistic about Beijing's market restrictions even though government officials have repeatedly pledged to increase access.

"If we don't deal with this responsibly, the first, natural, reaction will be to close up on both sides", he said.

That shift comes as China is now producing more of its own machinery and automobiles instead of importing them from countries like Germany - and it's now even competing with the European powerhouse in third markets, she said. Macron is on a state visit to China from January 8 to January 10 at the invitation of Xi.

China also agreed to lift a 16-year-old embargo on French beef within six months, Macron said.

Beyond beef, French officials said talks were continuing with China about its ban on French poultry, imposed in 2015 after an outbreak of bird flu. These businesses have also chafed at government policies they see as meant to assimilate and supplant foreign technology.

As president, Macron has pushed for the European Union to screen foreign investments in its strategic sectors and, signalling French annoyance at China's reluctance to open some of its domestic markets, that issue has been a focal point of the three-day visit.

"I want investment but there are areas that we consider strategic", Macron told reporters on the trip. During the visit of the French Head of State, several large deals were signed, the value of which was also not publicly announced.

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