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BEIJINGpowerballnet, June 21 (Xinhua) -- China's commerce ministry said Friday that the European Union (EU) is to blame for escalating trade frictions, which could lead to a "trade war."

"The responsibility lies solely with the EU side," the ministry said in a statement commenting on concerns from the European side over possible escalations of trade frictions.

powerballnet|China says EU to blame for escalating trade frictions

China does not want to see the ongoing trade frictions with the EU, the ministry stressed, pointing out that it was the European side that "regrettably" kept provoking trade disputes.

Since the beginning of this year, the EU imposed 31 restrictive trade and investment measures against China, 25 of which were trade remedies, seriously undermining China-EU economic and trade cooperation, according to the ministry.

Meanwhile, China has demonstrated an open and cooperative attitude and explicitly sought to solve the issues through dialogue and consultation, said the ministry.

China has always followed the rules of the World Trade Organization and used trade remedy measures with prudence and restraint, it said.

In face of the EU's protectionism, China is determined to safeguard its legitimate and lawful interests, and hopes the EU will handle the differences through dialogues and prevent trade frictions from escalating or going out of control, the ministry noted.