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For amiable China-Japan ties

By By Kumiko Haba (China Daily)

09:09, December 23, 2011

The aim of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's visit to China is to develop and strengthen economic collaboration, because when Japan develops the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with the United States, he needs to show that Japan's stance is not disproportionately inclined toward the US.

Apart from economic collaboration, the Japanese government has to discuss security matters, too, with its Chinese counterpart. When Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Genba visited China, he and the Japanese government wanted to develop common regional security arrangements with China, especially a crisis management mechanism. Constructing on this mechanism, the Japanese government has been trying to discuss the development of mutually strategic reciprocal relations.

But the postponement of Noda's visit to China last week, apparently because the original date coincided with the 74th anniversary of the Nanjing incident (called Nanjing Massacre by Chinese), which brought untold sufferings and numerous deaths to the Chinese people, has had a complex influence on Japanese people, one of which is akin to embarrassment. Noda will now visit China on Dec 25-26.

Strengthening economic collaboration and development will undoubtedly be the most important topic on Noda's agenda. But the restoration and strengthening of political relations, mutual reliance and security, especially the crisis management mechanism to settle maritime disputes, and hearing Chinese leaders' opinions will also be important. It won't be an exaggeration to say that Noda's visit to China will be an extremely important moment in Japanese contemporary political history, because of the instability of the dollar and euro and the US' decision to deploy 2,500 Marines in Australia.

The unexpected death of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's leader, Kim Jong-il, will also make the Korean Peninsula issue a vital subject during Noda's visit.

Relations between China and Japan have soured in recent times mainly because of the territorial dispute over the East China Sea islands, which are called Diaoyu Islands in China and Senkaku Islands in Japan, and the collision between a Chinese fishing trawler and Japan Coast Guard ships. Bilateral relations deteriorated swiftly after that and mutual feelings between Japanese and Chinese peoples changed for the worse. The two governments and peoples need to be cautious if they want to strengthen mutual collaboration.

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