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EU Aims for Strategic Autonomy After CCP Virus Pandemic

The European Union is planning to build “strategic autonomy” in essential products in the wake of the CCP virus pandemic, European Council President Charles Michel said on Tuesday.

Speaking at the Brussels Economic Forum, Michel said “strategic independence” was the EUs “common project for this century.”

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European Union flags flutter outside the European Commission headquarters in Brussels on June 30, 2019. (Yves Herman/Reuters)

The EUs budget-and-recovery plan, which was finalized in July after intensive negotiations among its 27 member states, was “a major step” toward this “vital objective,” said Michel, who leads the European Council, which comprises the heads of state of the EU member countries.

The recovery plan is a massive stimulus package for European economies, which have been hit hard by the pandemic caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as the novel coronavirus.

“This bold European response was fundamental to protect our citizens and safeguard our businesses,” said Michel, who previously served as prime minister of Belgium between 2014 and 2019.

“Our industrial strategy will foster greater independence, and make sure we have access to all the necessary resources to ensure the prosperity of our citizens. This includes, for instance, greater autonomy in producing processors, vital medicines, and other essential products.”

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Medical workers put on protective gear before working at the unit for COVID-19-infected patients at the Erasme Hospital in Brussels on March 27, 2020. (Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP via Getty Images)

EU countries have become worried about supply chains to the European economy after the CCP virus pandemic exposed Europes over-reliance on China for medical equipment, raw materials for drugs, and components for the car industry.

Michael Roth, Germanys minister of state for Europe, warned European countries last month of Beijings tendency to use economic dependencies as leverage in power politics.

“The coronavirus crisis has been a wake-up call,” Roth wrote in a newspaper commentary, as it has been a “painful reminder to us of how dependent Europe has become in certain areas.”

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