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Japan's Abe confirms China visit this year

AFP  |  Vladivostok 

Shinzo confirmed Wednesday his plans to visit this year in what would be the first trip to the country by a Japanese since 2011, the latest sign of warmer ties between the two rivals.

"I intend to visit this year, the year in which we commemorate between and China," said in a speech at an economic forum in the far eastern Russian city of

"After that, I very much wish to invite Xi to Japan," said Abe, speaking after meeting China's on the sidelines of the forum. "Through this exchange of visits at the leaders' level, I hope to raise Japan-relations to a new stage. I am firmly determined in this regard."

Japanese media have suggested that Abe's visit would be timed to signed on October 23, 1978.

and Xi have met numerous times over the last few years on the sidelines of international events.

However no Japanese has paid an official visit to China since 2011 and no Chinese has visited since 2010.

Abe praised his meeting with Xi, saying they held "highly significant talks regarding Japan-China relations and the various issues that we face together."


A Japanese foreign ministry spokesman, Takeshi Osuga, said the two leaders "shared their determination to promote bilateral relations and to make progress on all fronts." Relations between China and soured in 2012 over a territorial dispute over several tiny islands in the Sea.

Upon returning to power in 2012, Abe took a firm position on Japan's claims to the disputed island chain, aggravating tensions with

But he has since softened his rhetoric and called on China to press to give up its nuclear and missile programmes.

Japanese businesses have also voiced desire for closer ties with China to boost trade.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, September 12 2018. 16:05 IST
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