Japan-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and Working Lunch
November 25, 2019
On November 25, commencing at 12:25 p.m., Mr. MOTEGI Toshimitsu, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, held a working lunch (approximately 1 hour and 5 minutes) and a Japan-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (approximately 1 hour) with H.E. Mr. Wang Yi, State Councilor and Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China. The overview is as follows (From China, Mr. Kong Xuanyou, Ambassador of China to Japan, Mr. Luo Zhaohui, Vice Foreign Minister, and others attended, and from Japan, Mr. YOKOI Yutaka, Ambassador of Japan to China, Mr. TAKIZAKI Shigeki, Director-General of the Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and others attended.).
1 Opening Remarks
(1) The overview of Minister Motegi’s opening remarks is as follows.
- I welcome your visit to Japan. I am pleased we can meet again since our last meeting on the margins of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly session. Maintaining communication on a regular basis between the Foreign Ministers, alongside the reciprocal visits between our leaders, is vital for Japan-China relations.
- It is befitting that Japan and China, two countries welcoming a “new era of Japan-China relations,” work together toward peace, stability, and prosperity of the region and the international community.
- As head of the diplomatic authority, I intend to continue to cooperate with State Councilor Wang to ensure that President Xi Jinping’s State Visit to Japan is meaningful.
- Today, I look forward to once again exchanging opinions candidly to create constructive interaction for matters of mutual interest relating to our bilateral relations.
(2) The overview of State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang’s response is as follows.
- Japan-China relations are advancing in a positive direction, thanks to high-level reciprocal visits between the two countries and their efforts. We have a shared view that the two countries will value this momentum and make efforts to pave open a “new era.”
- At the same time, China intends to strengthen its coordination with Japan to make preparations in all aspects for President Xi’s State Visit to Japan next spring. I hope that the two countries will approach each other and engage in forward-looking discussions to promote cooperation and manage our differences. China intends to develop an environment and cultivate an atmosphere necessary for further deepening the Japan-China relationship and hope we can achieve outcomes.
- Amid growing uncertainties in the international community, I hope that China and Japan, the second and third largest economic powers, fulfill a proactive role not only for the bilateral relationship but also for world stability. I also look forward to further exchanging opinions on regional and international affairs.
2 Japan-China Relations
The two sides shared the view on cooperating to ensure that President Xi’s visit to Japan next spring will be suitable for a “new era of Japan-China relations” and meaningful In addition, they confirmed that efforts by Japan and China, as world-class economic powers, to achieve a peaceful future for the world and address regional and international issues will lead to further strengthening the Japan-China relationship.
(2) High-level reciprocal visits
- The two sides valued that high-level reciprocal visits and communication have been steadily maintained.
- Regarding the Japan-China-ROK Trilateral Summit, Minister Motegi looked forward to China’s leadership to ensure forward-looking and constructive discussions take place. The two sides confirmed that they will cooperate toward the success of the next Japan-China-ROK Trilateral Summit to be attended by Prime Minister Abe.
(3) Economic and practical cooperation
- The two sides shared the view on further promoting economic and practical cooperation in areas in which they have shared interests and agree on the direction, and welcomed the signing of the “Agreement Between the Government of Japan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on Cooperation in Animal Health and Quarantine” (Japan-China Animal Health and Quarantine Agreement)(Japanese(PDF)／English(PDF)／Chinese(PDF)）.
- Minister Motegi once again raised the matter of China’s early removal of import restriction measures on Japanese food products and realizing Japan’s exports of agricultural products, such as rice and beef, to China, and strongly requested China’s forward-looking response.
- Minister Motegi expressed his expectations toward China’s effective measures, stating that developing a truly fair, equitable, and stable business environment will lead to Japanese companies’ further investment and expansion in China as well as to the sustainable development of the Chinese economy.
(4) Japan-China High-Level People to People and Cultural Exchange Dialogue
- The two sides confirmed the importance of seeking to improve mutual understanding between the peoples of two countries, and affirmed the importance of promoting youth exchanges for developing the bilateral relationship in the mid-long term.
- The two sides welcomed the successful holding of the first meeting of the Japan-China High-Level People-to-People and Cultural Exchange Dialogue, and shared the view on promoting exchanges by making 2020 the “Japan-China Cultural and Sports Exchange Promotion Year.”
- Regarding dialogues between diplomatic authorities, the two sides shared the view on preparing the “Annual Plan for Exchanges and Cooperation in 2020 Between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China,” (Japanese(PDF)) and on continuing to hold further dialogues.
(5) Hong Kong
Regarding the situation in Hong Kong, Minister Motegi expressed deep concerns, and noted the importance of the continued prosperity of a free and open Hong Kong under “one country, two systems.” Minister Motegi expressed his expectations that the situation will be resolved peacefully as quickly as possible.
(6) Maritime security
- The two sides shared the view that they will continue to work together to give tangible form to the confirmation made between the two leaders at the Japan-China Summit Meeting in June, which was to aim to build constructive relations in the maritime security area, based on the recognition that they should be “partners who cooperate together and not become threats to each other.”
- Minister Motegi strongly requested China’s positive responses in the maritime security area, including the East China Sea such as the waters surrounding the Senkaku Islands.
(7) Japanese nationals detained in China
Regarding the Japanese nationals detained in China, Minister Motegi continued to request a positive response from China.
(8) Contribution to international community
- Minister Motegi emphasized the importance of promoting infrastructure investment in line with international standards, taking into account the “G20 Principles for Quality Infrastructure Investment.”
- The two sides shared the view on continuing to exchange views toward the early conclusion of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
3 Regional Affairs
(1) North Korean affairs
The two sides exchanged views regarding recent North Korean affairs, and shared the view on cooperating toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, which is a common goal of both Japan and China, and on the importance of the full implementation of UN Security Council resolutions. In addition, Minister Motegi asked State Councilor Wang for his understanding and support for the early resolution of the abductions issue.
(2) South China Sea
Regarding the South China Sea issue, which is a concern of the international community, Minister Motegi noted the importance of demilitarization of disputed features.
(3) U.S.-China relations
The two sides discussed the current U.S.-China relations and exchanged views regarding relations with the United States. Minister Motegi noted the importance of finding solutions to issues through dialogue.
- Agreement between the Government of Japan and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on Cooperation in Animal Health and Quarantine(Japanese(PDF)／English(PDF)／Chinese(PDF)）
- Annual Plan for Exchanges and Cooperation in 2020 Between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China(Japanese(PDF))