Japanese parliament speaker expects all-around development of ties with China

A healthy political relationship between Japan and China is indispensable for the development of economic and trade cooperation, Japanese House of Representatives Speaker Yohei Kono said Wednesday.

Kono, who is also chairman of Japan's Association for the Promotion of International Trade, said he expected all-around development of the Japan-China ties.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to China last year marked an important step for the improvement of bilateral ties, which have been "warm economically but cold politically," Kono said at a plenary session of the trade promotion organ, of which he was reelected chairman.

He added that Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's upcoming visit to Japan will further seal the bright future of Japan-China relations.

Kono said the association will continue to adhere to the principle of an inseparable connection between politics and economics and make continued efforts to boost development of both countries and promote peace and stability in Asia and the world at large.

According to its 2007 working scheme released at the plenary session, the association aims to further promote mutually-beneficial strategic cooperation between Japan and China, deepen the bilateral trade and economic relationship, and push forward regional economic cooperation in East Asia.

China-Japan relations had been frozen for a long time due to former Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's repeated visits to the Yasukuni Shrine, where 14 Japanese World War II class-A war criminals are honored.

China and Japan overcame political obstacles last October when Chinese President Hu Jintao and Abe met in Beijing. The two reached agreements on facilitating a healthier development of bilateral relations, which brought bilateral ties back on track for improvement.

During his visit to Japan on April 11-13, Wen is expected to meet with Abe and deliver a speech in the parliament. He will also visit the Japanese cities of Kyoto and Osaka.

This will be the first visit to Japan by a Chinese premier in seven years.

Source: Xinhua

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