Abe’s China visit expected to promote ties, boost cooperation

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During meetings, the two countries signed a $30 billion currency swap aimed at facilitating money exchanges for businesses.

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 26, 2018. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the China Development Bank will also launch a scheme to jointly finance infrastructure projects in third countries, Kyodo News reported.

"These interactions will help to further strengthen our trade and investment ties, and cooperation in new areas such as healthcare, digital technologies, agriculture and food processing, disaster risk reduction and disaster resilient infrastructure", he said.

According to a survey released ahead of the 14th Beijing-Tokyo Forum held here earlier this month, more than 70 percent of the respondents in China and Japan view bilateral relations as important and more than 60 percent hope the two countries enhance bilateral and multilateral cooperation.

Abe said, "We agreed to cooperate in responding to maritime accidents in the East China Sea and to work towards expanding a communication mechanism by quickly setting up a hotline between defense officials, so that we can make the East China Sea a sea of peace, cooperation and friendship". "We both agreed that as countries that have great influence in the region and in the world, we need to actively safeguard free trade".

The ministry is in close contact with Japan over Abe's visit and the Japanese side will brief Taiwanese officials on the results of the summit, Hsieh added.

Abe said he sought frank talks with Xi and Li covering North Korea and trade issues.

The two countries appear poised to enter a new phase in bilateral relations; one in which they will pursue cooperation on worldwide challenges while at the same time their territorial dispute over the Okinawa Prefecture's Senkaku Islands will continue.

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Experts say with Trump pushing both countries on trade and security issues, China and Japan are desperate to smooth over regional relations as they seek allies to help them weather the U.S. storm.

The arrangement, which takes effect on Friday and lasts until October 25, 2021, will allow the exchange of local currencies between the two central banks for up to 200 billion yuan or 3.4 trillion yen ($30 billion), the BOJ said.

In April, Trump tweeted that Japan had "hit us hard on trade for years". Japan has stressed that such cooperation can only happen when projects meet worldwide standards. "Now that relations between the two countries have returned to a normal track, we would like to achieve win-win outcomes by stably developing our ties in the long term", Li said, emphasizing that there would be a particular focus on economic and trade cooperation.

Mr Abe also said Tokyo was "determined" to normalise diplomatic relations with Pyongyang, but only if preconditions were met, including denuclearisation and the release of kidnapped Japanese citizens.

The unlikely warming of relations between the two countries began in September 2017 when Abe became the first Japanese leader in 15 years to attend the Chinese embassy's National Day celebrations.

"If he adjusts his relationship with China, he will have more initiative and space in the future when he is negotiating with the United States". His key policy speech came the day before he makes the first trip to Beijing by a Japanese leader in seven years.

"We should constructively resolve our conflicts to maintain the political foundation for healthy China-Japan relations", he said. President Xi Jinping reciprocated Abe's gesture by refraining from criticizing Japan at the Nanjing Massacre commemorative events in December 2017.

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