CHINA / National

Japan urged to seriously respond to Hu's proposals
Updated: 2006-04-23 08:35

Chinese Vice President Zeng Qinghong here on Saturday urged Japan to seriously respond to President Hu Jintao's recent proposals on improving bilateral relations.

"To keep friendly Sino-Japanese cooperation is important to both countries, to Asia and even to the world", Zeng told Japanese Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry Nikai Toshihiro, who is here for the ongoing Boao Forum for Asia annual conference 2006.

In his meeting with the heads of seven Japan-China friendship organizations late last month, President Hu Jintao urged Japanese leaders to respect and draw a lesson from the history and act out of the consideration for the benefit of the two peoples and for a bright future of China-Japan relations.

China hopes Japan can seriously approach the proposals, said Zeng.

The two countries have shared 2,000 years of friendly exchanges, but also experienced bitter history, Zeng said.

The Chinese government and people attach great importance to the relations with Japan. "Neither the Chinese government nor the Japanese people should be blamed for the current difficulty in bilateral ties," Zong pointed out.

President Hu expressed during the meeting with the Japanese delegation his willingness to hold talks with Japanese leaders as soon as they stop visiting the Yasukuni Shrine which honors Japan's World War II war criminals."

Nikai Toshihiro said that the Japan-China relations is very important and the two countries should exert joint efforts to promote friendly cooperation.

He said Japan will promote exchanges and cooperation with China in environmental protection, intellectual property rights protection and tourism.

Some 850 Chinese and overseas officials, business people and scholars attended the forum in this coastal scenic town in southmost China's island province of Hainan.