The European Union’s recent trade-policy strategy towards China is ineffective and shortsighted. It focuses on bilateral market access and involves a strong U S-style confrontational stance. A redesign of the EU’s trade policy strategy is needed. In this paper, Europe’s leading trade scholar Patrick Messerlin and Jinghui Wang calls for foresightedness in the European Union’s policies towards China. It reviews the EU’s strategy and proposes concrete policy options that will allow it to more effectively promote its commercial interests in China, by focusing on topics that will draw support from Chinese interests and bring greater economic benefits for both parties. Messerlin and Wang conclude by looking at the EU trade policy towards China in a truly global context and calls for the involvement of the U S, Japan and, most important, medium-sized economies as key partners.