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French want to sell arms to China

From the Beeb. Is there no depth to which they'll sink to turn a Euro?

BBC Paris correspondent

French President Jacques Chirac says he regards the European arms embargo on China as outdated and wants it lifted as soon as possible.

His remarks came ahead of his visit to China on Friday, and again France finds itself at odds with the US.
Washington is urging the EU not to lift an embargo that was imposed after the 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in Tiananmen Square.

Mr Chirac's trip to China is aimed at boosting flourishing trade relations.

When Chinese President Hu Jintao visited France earlier this year, Paris not only laid out the red carpet but turned the Eiffel Tower red in his honour and named 2004 the Year of China.

Now that Gallic charm offensive appears to be paying off as Mr Chirac makes his return visit to Beijing.

China is a political and economic priority for France, an area in which it is competing fiercely and successfully with the US for business and influence.

French arms

America may have been faster to woo China, but France is doing its best to catch up. Mr Chirac is bringing with him four ministers and more than 50 leading French businessmen to discuss deals with China.

Among the biggest is an $8bn (£4.47bn or 6.48bn euros) contract to construct four nuclear reactors there, with a Franco-German group pitted against an Anglo-American bid.
Another major project is the planned high-speed train from Beijing to Shanghai, for which France believes its TGV trains would be ideal.

As Mr Chirac has made clear, he also believes French defence companies could do well in China - if only Europe would lift its arms embargo.

However, the sensitive issue of human rights in China is unlikely to figure high on the agenda during the French president's visit.

In the short term, France is unlikely to catch up with the level of German investment in the lucrative Chinese market, but its efforts are helping to ensure that if present trends continue, Europe as a whole could soon be China's largest trading partner.
Typical of the French heirarchy. They don't really care at all do they?

They have no conscience at all, or so it appears. No remorse, after all who was it who sold Exocets to Argentina as soon as the Falklands was over???

First the courted Saddam, now Beijing! Who next? Pyongyang? Harare?

Where will the Frogs stop?


War Hero
Book Reviewer
claymore said:
SKJOLD said:
Only because they cant sell to Saddam any more
Fair point, Skjold. Pity we don't make weapons anyone in his right mind would want to buy..........except the MoD that is.
MoD - right mind. Bit of an oxymoron there methinks.
MoD - right mind. Bit of an oxymoron there methinks.[/quote]

I retract it unreservedly and will now go and fall on my sword. it's British-made, so it'll probably break. :D

But why aren't the Chinese using their normal method of arms procurement, i.e. nicking other countries designs then producing knock off's for their military? :lol:

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