Former Chinese vice premier urges closer cooperation among China, Japan, ROK

16:16, April 25, 2011      

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Former Chinese Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan said Monday that China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK) should enhance their cooperative partnership to deal with international risks and challenges.

Zeng made the remarks at the Northeast Asia Trilateral Forum, urging efforts to accelerate the establishment of a free trade zone among the three countries.

It would become the world's third largest free trade zone after the North American Free Trade Zone and European Union, with the three countries' combined economic volumes accounting for near 20 percent of the world's total and having an aggregated population of 1.5 billion, Zeng said.

He noted that the free trade zone would help boost the impetus and sustainability of economic growth in the three countries and push forward economic integration in east Asia and Asia-Pacific regions.

Speaking about the soaring mineral resource prices, Zeng suggested that China, Japan and the ROK set up a coordination mechanism to increase the say of consumers.

He urged efforts to strengthen dialogue between resource consumers and producers, improve resource pricing mechanism, fight against price monopoly and promote fair trade.

He also called for efforts to build a regional natural disaster response mechanism, which would involve cooperation on disaster warning, timely forecasting and more exchanges among professional disaster relief teams.

Zeng further noted that all sides in the northeast Asian region should embrace a new security outlook centering on mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and coordination, and resolve disputes through dialogue and negotiation in an effort to maintain regional stability.

High-ranking officials and prominent figures from political, academic and business circles in China, Japan and ROK attended the forum, which was held in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province.

The forum, co-sponsored by China's Xinhua News Agency, Japan's Nikkei news group and the ROK's leading daily newspaper Joong-Ang Ilbo, seeks to strengthen non-governmental exchanges among the three nations.

The yearly event has been held alternately in the three countries since 2006.

Source: Xinhua
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