The European bloc is cautious about China’s militarization of islands.
EU officials are set to bring up discussions about the South China Sea during a summit on Friday, possbily in a careful manner to avoid the tense situation seen last year.
Premier Li Keqiang will meet top EU officials at the summit in Brussels to discuss a wide range of issues.
The EU remains cautious about the direction of its second-largest trading partner, concerned by its militarization of islands in the South China Sea and what it sees as increased authoritarianism.
But officials said they will be wary to avoid a repeat of last year’s tense EU-China summit in Beijing, which failed to agree a joint statement because of the maritime issue.