Premier Li Keqiang met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Great Hall of the People on Oct 25 upon Abe’s arrival in Beijing.
During the meeting, Premier Li welcomed Japan to participate in China’s opening-up and reform process and invited Japan to participate in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Both leaders also attended a reception to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Sino-Japanese friendship, during which Premier Li delivered a speech.
“The elder generation of leaders of both countries showed great foresight and made a correct assessment of the situation 40 years ago to sign the treaty, which was another milestone in the history of bilateral ties following the normalization of relations between China and Japan in 1972,” said Premier Li.
“On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the treaty, we need adhere to the general direction of peace, friendship and cooperation and conform to the trend of the times so as to jointly build a more mature, steady and progressive China-Japan ties,” Premier Li continued.
“The two sides need to understand each other and foster their strategic positioning in a right way,” Premier Li said. “The consensus that China and Japan are partners rather than mutual threats should be better implemented in concrete actions.”
“The two countries need to manage differences and problems constructively on the basis of the principles set in the four political documents between China and Japan and in the spirit of ‘taking history as a mirror and facing to the future,’” noted Premier Li.
The Premier called on both sides to push forward pragmatic cooperation by tapping complementary advantages, encouraging innovation, and exploring third-party markets to upgrade the quality and efficiency of cooperation.
“China has scored remarkable achievements since its reform and opening up, while Japan also stepped forward alongside China,” Abe said.
Saying that Japan and China played “an irreplaceable role” in the world’s economic progress, the Japanese prime minister encouraged both sides to jointly contribute to the continuous development of bilateral cooperation and the world’s peace and prosperity.
Premier Li and Abe also took a group photo with some of the people who witnessed the signing of the treaty 40 years ago and their families, and visited a photo exhibition on economic and trade cooperation between China and Japan.
Abe’s agenda in Beijing
Abe arrived in Beijing on Oct 25 for an official visit at the invitation of Premier Li.
Abe’s visit, scheduled from Oct 25 to 27, marks the first official visit to China by a Japanese prime minister in seven years.
Before his arrival, Abe commented on his own social media account that there are various challenges, and that’s why the leaders should be more open-minded and frank in their discussions.
“By doing this, I would like to push Japan-China relations to a new stage,” he wrote.
He will attend a reception with Premier Li and the two leaders will mark the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Peace and Friendship between China and Japan.
On Oct 26, Abe and Premier Li will attend the Third-Party Market Cooperation Forum.
During his three-day visit, Chinese leaders and Abe are expected to exchange views on improving and developing bilateral ties on global and regional issues of common concern.
As this year marks the 40th anniversary of the signing of the China-Japan Treaty of Peace and Friendship, Abe said the treaty marks the starting point for the bilateral relationship between Japan and China.