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Northeast Asia forum calls for promoting regional economic integration

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-12-05 16:05

SHIZUOKA - Former high-ranking officials and prominent figures from China, Japan and South Korea on Monday called for promoting trilateral cooperation to push for regional economic integration.

The proposal was made at the 11th session of the Northeast Asia Trilateral Forum, a regional platform gathering 30 political, business and academic experts from the three countries.

The forum, under the theme of "How China, Japan and South Korea shall take action with the increasing tendency of inwardness in the world", was attended by former Chinese Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan, former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda and former South Korean Prime Minister Lee Hong-koo.

In his keynote speech, Zeng said globalization and regional integration are still a general trend in the world, and building the East Asia Economic Community is a common goal for China, Japan and South Korea.

He called on the three neighbor countries to promote their cooperation to build China-Japan-South Korea Free Trade Zone, enhance inter-connection and intercommunication, and improve industry collaboration in areas such as Internet economy, high-end manufacturing and intelligent manufacturing and modern service industry.

Zeng also stressed that trilateral cooperation needs favorable political atmosphere. The three countries should show courage and responsibility when dealing with historical and sensitive practical issues and exhibit wisdom and vision to seek common ground while reserving differences.

The three countries shall keep differences at control, prevent current problems from deteriorating and new problems from emerging, and resolve conflicts through collaboration, Zeng said.

For his part, Fukuda said with increasing uncertainties in the world, the three countries should promote understanding and cooperation between each other and make contribution to world peace and stability.

Lee, for his part, said to build Northeast Asia Community needs diplomatic breakthrough and creativity on the part of the three neighbors.

The forum, launched in 2006 and co-sponsored by China's Xinhua News Agency, Japan's Nikkei news group and South Korea's JoongAng Ilbo, is aimed at strengthening non-governmental exchanges among the three neighbor countries.

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