Healthy China-Japan ties urged

By Cao Desheng (China Daily) 08:48, January 26, 2024

Premier Li Qiang meets on Thursday with a delegation of Japanese business leaders in Beijing. FENG YONGBIN/CHINA DAILY

Premier Li Qiang called on Thursday for joint efforts from both China and Japan to uphold the principles of peace, friendship and cooperation in order to bring bilateral ties back on the track of healthy and stable development.

During a meeting in Beijing with a delegation of Japanese business leaders, comprising more than 200 executives from major Japanese companies, Li said China-Japan relations are currently at a crucial juncture.

The premier said that China and Japan should translate the political consensus that "the two countries are cooperative partners, not a threat to each other" into specific policies and concrete actions.

He also urged the Japanese side to properly handle the historical issues and the Taiwan question.

The delegation, led by Chairman of the Japan Business Federation Tokura Masakazu, Chairman of Japan-China Economic Association Shindo Kosei and Chairman of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Kobayashi Ken, is in Beijing on a four-day visit to China starting Tuesday.

During the meeting, Li emphasized the need to strengthen economic and trade cooperation between China and Japan and jointly safeguard stable and unimpeded industrial and supply chains.

He said that the Chinese and Japanese economies are deeply integrated with each other, playing a crucial role as the "ballast" and "propeller" in bilateral relations.

China is willing to tap into cooperation potential with Japan, share development opportunities, and support companies from both countries in strengthening cooperation in the fields of technological innovation, digital economy, green development, healthcare and elderly care to achieve higher-level mutual benefit, the premier said.

Li expressed his hope that the Japanese business community will exert a positive influence on the countries' win-win cooperation.

He assured the Japanese business leaders that China will continue to uphold the policy of opening-up, further shorten the negative list for foreign investment and fully implement the removal of all the restrictions on foreign investment in the manufacturing sector.

While ensuring the national treatment for foreign-funded enterprises, Li said that China strives to build a world-class business environment that is market-oriented and governed by a sound legal framework.

China welcomes Japanese companies to continue investing in the country, he said. It is hoped that Japan will provide an open, fair and nondiscriminatory business environment for Chinese companies in the country, he added.

Sino-Japanese relations had become strained over the past few years. However, during a meeting in November in San Francisco in the United States, President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida reaffirmed jointly building a constructive and stable China-Japan relationship that meets the demands of the new era.

Observers said that the delegation's visit to China has sent positive signals about both economic and political aspects in bilateral ties, indicating the desire of the Japanese business community to maintain dialogue and communication with China in order to seek opportunities for cooperation.

The leaders of the three Japanese business organizations told Li that they look forward to both countries building a constructive and stable Japan-China relationship based on mutual benefit.

They expressed their willingness to deepen exchanges and cooperation with China in multiple areas and jointly promote regional economic cooperation.

(Web editor: Tian Yi, Liang Jun)


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