Economics is an important perspective of growing interest to analyze the climate change issues, especially, when we concentrate on the development of market-based instruments at the regional level. Starting from the fundamental characteristics of economic goods, the research put forwards a definition of climate change goods and, furthermore, builds a model of climate change policies in three transitional phases: from global public goods to regional private goods. Based on this model, the paper analyzes the development of climate change strategies in China and the EU, specifically considering the climate policies in Central and Eastern European economies in transition. While international climate negotiations remain important, the development of market-based instruments at the regional development is an important issue of transformation and social learning. From our comparative study, the transitional phase will last long period for all regions. Furthermore, the phase of a mature, perfectly functioning market, will never be reached because some public good elements of climate change will remain. There are many common issues faced by the EU and China, from a transitional perspective such as national harmonisation versus regional differentiation, and integration of top-down versus bottom-up strategies, and so on. Mutual learning on capacity development in China and the EU will be beneficial even if linking of climate change goods' markets in China and the EU will only be possible after 2020 due to divergent backgrounds.