Japanese Hopeful of Ties with China

May 12, 2018  Editor: huangjuan

The Japanese public is applauding the return of more sound Japan-China ties, marked by the just concluded visit by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

Li wrapped up an official visit at the invitation of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Japan on Friday, the first by a Chinese premier in eight years.

During the visit, the Chinese premier called for a more lasting, stable bilateral relationship. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the signing of the treaty of peace and friendship between the two Asian countries.

Abe welcomed Li's remarks on bilateral ties, while calling for more coordination and less competition between the two East Asian nations.

The positive momentum in bilateral relations has been widely praised.

"Japan and China resuming high-level talks is very important to eliminating conjecture and speculation," Tsukasa Kuriyama, adjunct lecturer at Chuo University in Tokyo, told Xinhua.

"I hope that leaders of our two countries could forge good relations, and bring countries in the region closer together and move forward in unison," he said.

Tase Yasuhiro, political analyst and columnist with leading business publication Nikkei, said, "I think the Chinese premier's visit here was very fruitful."

He added that the consensus reached between regional major countries - including China and Japan - on the Korean Peninsula issue is particularly important.

During Li's visit, Asia's two largest economies signed several documents on cooperation, including a memorandum of understanding on setting up a maritime and air liaison mechanism, a crucial step in managing issues in the East China Sea.

Asahi Shimbun, a well-read newspaper in Japan, said in an editorial that the agreement to set up the liaison mechanism, reached after years of intermittent talks, "is a step forward."

Continued efforts are needed to bolster the effectiveness of the system to prevent accidental clashes between navy vessels or military aircraft, the editorial added.

The Japanese business community is excited about the opportunities in improved relations, especially those generated by China's further reform and opening-up and its Belt and Road Initiative.

"For Japanese enterprises, they might face bigger opportunities for exploring the massive Chinese market as China has a population of some 1.4 billion people," said an article published by Japan's Kyodo News.

"As Japanese enterprises are suffering a dwindling domestic market, the Chinese market is all the more important to them," it said, citing products like industrial robots sold well in China are where Japan enjoys an advantage.

"The Belt and Road Initiative is something that Japan should certainly be involved with. As neighbors, everyone wins," said Wataru Nakajima, logistics manager of JFE Holdings, Inc. in Tokyo.

He hailed in particular the two countries' commitment to promoting free trade.

Combining Japan and China's efforts to promote free trade has "a direct bearing on my business and all those involved in materials production, technology and exports, the lynchpins of our economy," he said.

During his visit, the Chinese premier also stressed the need to cement people-to-people exchanges, something warmly welcomed by Japan's leaders.

Japanese Emperor Akihito said he often recalls the moment when he was warmly welcomed by the Chinese people during his visit to China over 20 years ago, and strongly felt the hearts of the two peoples were connected.

University lecturer Kuriyama hopes that outstanding differences between the two won't dictate future relations.

"Japan and China have always been indispensable partners economically and connected culturally in some areas. As an educator, I hope our younger generations would be more future-oriented and regard each other as friends and most importantly, neighbors," he said.

(Source: Xinhua)

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