After the end of the Cold War, relations with Europe were not as high a priority for China as its relations with the United States, Japan and other Asian powers. However, interest in closer relations increased as economic contacts intensified and interest in a multipolar system grew. Although European leaders first imposed an arms embargo on China after Tiananmen (see “arms embargo below”), European leaders eased China`s isolation. The growth of the Chinese economy attracted the attention of many European visitors and, in return, Chinese businessmen began to visit Europe frequently. Europe`s interest in China led the EU to get involved in an unusual way with China in the 1990s and to trade at a high level. Trade between the EU and China grew faster than the Chinese economy itself, and tripled in ten years, from $14.3 billion in 1985 to $45.6 billion in 1994.  The European Union and China are two of the world`s largest distributors. China is now the EU`s second largest trading partner after the US and the EU is China`s largest trading partner. “This agreement helps strengthen our dialogue with China,” added Marie-Pierre Vedrenne (MoDem, France), a fictional contributor to Renew Europe.
The EU is in favour of opening trade relations with China. However, the EU wants China to act fairly, respect intellectual property rights and meet its obligations as a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO). During the European debt crisis, several European countries needed the bailout of the EU and the International Monetary Fund. China has supported Europe by buying billions of euros of junk;  in particular Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain. Some analysts suspected China of buying political influence in the EU, but China says it is building strong trade relations and supporting the European economy so that trade issues can move forward more easily.   China and the EU launched their first programme of scientific and technological cooperation in 1983. In addition, in 1998 they drafted a scientific and technological cooperation agreement, which was renewed in 2004 to network research organisations, industry, universities and individual researchers in specific projects supported by the EU budget.  Ongoing cooperation between the EU and China in the field of science and technology has been made available under the Horizon 2020 programme. The European Commission`s Horizon 2020 initiative covers: (i) food, agriculture and biotechnology (FAB); (ii) sustainable urbanization; iii) energy; (iv) aviation; v) and other areas such as ICT, water, health, society, polar research, the SME instrument and space.  EU-China standardization cooperation has developed in recent years and has developed in a more pragmatic and diversified manner, with the growing growth of bilateral trade between the EU and China and the recognition of the importance of standards.