Opinion / Op-Ed Contributors

China, Japan must eye shared destiny

By Tang Jiaxuan (China Daily) Updated: 2016-09-28 07:49

China, Japan must eye shared destiny

Tang Jiaxuan, president of China-Japan Friendship Association,meets with Japanese official during the opening ceremony of the two-day 12th Beijing-Tokyo Forum which began in Tokyo on Tuesday.[Photo/IC]

Editor's note: Tang Jiaxuan, president of China-Japan Friendship Association, delivered a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the two-day 12th Beijing-Tokyo Forum which began in Tokyo on Tuesday. Excerpts translated from the Chinese version of the speech follow:

I am greatly pleased to attend the 12th Beijing-Tokyo Forum. And I am very glad to meet old friends here in Tokyo. Under the planning of both countries, the forum has entered its second decade of new development.

The theme of this forum is "Sino-Japanese Cooperation for Asian and Global Peace and Development", a theme that carries profound connotations. As two important countries in Asia and the world, the warming and cooling of Sino-Japanese relations are related to regional and global peace and development. A long-term, healthy and stable Sino-Japanese relationship is in the interest of both countries and their peoples, and meets the expectation of the international community. China and Japan should overcome the existing difficulties as soon as possible and cooperate to pursue a mutually beneficial and win-win future of common development, prosperity and stability in Asia and the world.

The international situation is undergoing profound changes, with deepening globalization, evolving international pattern and order, booming regional cooperation in Asia and continuing advancement of interconnectivity efforts worldwide. The world economy, too, is undergoing changes, and geopolitical crises have broken out frequently, as reflected by the intense economic and social contradictions in some countries, raging turbulences and conflicts in some regions, and uncertainties over how to ensure sustainable development, fight terrorism, secure energy, combat climate change and deal with the refugee crisis. Given these facts, China and Japan should shoulder more responsibilities to maintain world peace and development.

In recent years, Sino-Japanese relations have suffered one setback after another because of certain factors. This has affected an otherwise good bilateral cooperation tradition, as well as hampered the efforts to integrate East Asian economies, and maintain regional peace and stability. China and Japan will benefit from reconciliation and suffer from conflicts. The influence of certain negative developments in Sino-Japanese ties have gone beyond the bilateral scope and perhaps spread to the whole region and the rest of the world. Various circles in both countries should develop better awareness of each other's concerns. Here, I want to share with you some of my opinions on how to develop Sino-Japanese relations based on my years of experience of working in this field.

To develop bilateral ties, China and Japan should abide by the consensuses reached between them to maintain the political foundation of bilateral ties. There are both historical feuds and current conflicts of interests and disputes between China and Japan, and their settlement remains particularly sensitive. So the two countries should try to reach agreements, focus on the fundamental interests of their countries and peoples, and steer the development of bilateral ties in a peaceful and cooperative direction. China and Japan have signed four political documents, which have helped formulate the "rules" for the development of ties. We should deal with each other according to these "rules" to ensure bilateral ties do not derail.

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