US, EU expresses strong concern over China’s ‘problematic and unilateral actions’ at sea

On Thursday, US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and the Secretary-General of the European External Action Service, Stefano Sannino, held talks in Washington. They released a joint statement raising strong concerns over China’s “problematic and unilateral actions” in the South and East China Seas and the Taiwan Strait, per Reuters.

Key quotes

The two sides discussed rights abuses in China, including repression of religious minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet and the erosion of autonomy in Hong Kong. 

They expressed strong concern over China’s problematic and unilateral actions in the South and East China Seas and the Taiwan Strait that undermine peace and security in the region and have a direct impact on the security and prosperity of both the United States and European Union.

Sherman and Sannino are due to continue their China-related discussions with high-level consultations on the Indo-Pacific on Friday.

FX reaction

The news should have weighed down the AUD/USD prices, considering Australia’s trade proximity to China, but the pre-NFP trading lull keeps the quote mostly unchanged around 0.7100 of late.

Read: AUD/USD bears look to 0.7000 on firmer yields ahead of US NFP