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etvfutures.com April 22, 2018


Top Diplomats of China, Japan Agree to Cooperate on N. Korean Issues

16 April 2018, 10:13 | Opal Carroll

Eels are widely consumed across Japan

Eels are widely consumed across Japan

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi yesterday began a visit to Japan described as a major step forward in improving frosty relations, as Tokyo tries to stay involved in a flurry of worldwide diplomacy over North Korea.

Wang's trip also follows an official visit by Kono to Beijing earlier this year, and marks the first visit by a Chinese foreign minister to Japan in a bilateral context in nine years.

Asia's two largest economies have reason to cooperate in the face of President Donald Trump's moves to impose tariffs on imports from their countries and his demands that they open their markets more to American exports.

While ties between Tokyo and Beijing have a troubled history, relations seem to have strengthened following Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's diplomatic visit in January.

However, Kono warned there would be "no true improvement of Japan-China relations without stability in the East China Sea". "We confirmed that we shall continue our close coordination while also completely implementing related UN Security Council resolutions to realise the irreversible, verifiable and complete denuclearisation of North Korea and its missiles".

Li is set to visit Japan next month for a trilateral summit with Abe and South Korean President Moon Jae In.

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Abe, who is due to meet with Trump in Florida on Tuesday to discuss North Korea, may also meet with Wang.

"After reopening these talks we're both standing at new starting points to discuss future cooperation that will, I hope, lead to fresh economic growth for both nations", Wang said.

"I hope that we will be able to discuss what Japan and China can work together on in the worldwide arena, not just bilateral issues", Kono told reporters on Friday.

On Monday, Kono and Wang will co-chair a bilateral, high-level economic dialogue in which they are expected to discuss opportunities for economic cooperation including trade and investment.

Wang, a former ambassador to Japan, said his visit was China's response to "positive" messages and policies from Tokyo but acknowledged "some complex and sensitive elements".

Wang spoke to reporters in Tokyo on Sunday after his meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono.



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