Britain seeking closure alliances with China


Britain and China have been involved in a diplomatic row over nuclear power in recent weeks.
But the two countries are now ironing out their differences with an announcement that there will be closer cooperation between stock exchanges and other financial services.
British Prime Minister Theresa May is understood to be keen to forge stronger relations with China.
As Britain gears up to leave Europe following the June referendum, Mrs May knows that she needs to develop enhanced relationships with trade partners outside the EU.
The British finance minister, Philip Hammond, has now held high level talks with Chinese Vice Premier Ma Kai in a bid to cement what both governments say is a “golden era” in their relationship.
The two countries are currently the second and fifth biggest economies in the world and they hope that by forging even closer links, they may enhance their positions even further.
However, they have been involved in a diplomatic spat of late. In July, Mrs May decided to delay giving the go ahead to a nuclear power plant project, which was partly funded by China.
That decision came under fire by officials in Beijing, although Mrs May has now given the scheme the green light.
With China gradually relaxing controls on its currency, the UK is strengthening its links with China.
It is hoping that the City of London’s impressive status will allow it to tap into the huge Chinese market.
Mr Hammond has revealed a number of financial initiatives including stronger links between stock exchanges in London and Shanghai and the opening of new London offices for Chinese financial firms. There will also be a relaxation of regulations so that British businesses will be able to own bigger stakes in sections of the Chinese financial sector.
Mr Hammond said: “Our strategic collaborations are evidence of the continuing strength of this relationship.”
Britain is now facing a long, drawn-out divorce from Europe. A High Court ruling decided that Mrs May could not trigger Article 50 without the say so of Parliament.
However, the Prime Minister has said that she was still determined to stick to her timescale of invoking Article 50 before March next year, so she can get on with the business of leaving Europe, as decided by the British public.
She is now launching an appeal in the Supreme Court.