China, Japan to discuss oil dispute
By Qin Jize (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-01-10 06:07
China and Japan are likely to hold another round of talks concerning the
dispute over gas and oil exploration of the East China Sea. The talks are
expected to take place in Beijing at the end of January or early February.
The two sides reached the agreement after informal negotiations between Cui
Tiankan, director of the Foreign Ministry's Asian Affairs Department, and his
visiting Japanese counterpart Kenichiro Sasae, according to sources from the
There was no immediate comment from the Chinese Foreign Ministry on the
The latest round of talks on the issue took place last October in Tokyo, in
which the two countries agreed in principle to develop the area jointly, said
Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang last week in a regular briefing.
He added that the two sides had not yet touched upon any further details,
including questions of investment and profits concerning the proposed joint
The talks are believed to have covered a wide range of issues including the
dispute over the suicide of a diplomat at the Japanese Consulate-General in
Shanghai last year and the continuation of the Six-Party Talks.
On the same day, China and India began two days of strategic dialogue in
Beijing, as the second round of talks in an attempt to increase mutual
understanding and enhance co-operation in regional and global affairs.
This comes after New Delhi and Beijing agreed to qualitatively upgrade their
relations to strategic levels in April 2005.
Vice-Foreign Minister Wu Dawei, who is in charge of Asian affairs, leads the
Chinese side, while Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran heads the Indian delegation.
The dialogue is taking place ahead of the seventh round of boundary talks
between special representatives of China and India in New Delhi later in
January. It is widely believed that the strategic dialogue will set a direction
for further boundary negotiations.
Analysts said the boundary issue would not be solved overnight but they are
optimistic about the final settlement.
The dialogue is also the first major bilateral event in 2006, which is being
dubbed the India-China Friendship Year and is expected to take bilateral
relations forward to a higher level of co-operation.
Meanwhile, India's Oil Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar is scheduled to visit
Beijing today in the hope of reinforcing energy ties between the two countries.
(China Daily 01/10/2006 page2)