Visit to the People's Republic of China by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi
Meeting with Premier Zhu Rongji
(Overview and Evaluation)
8 October 2001
On 8 October, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, on his visit to China, held a roughly one and a half hour meeting and working lunch from 14:00-15:30 Japan time with Premier Zhu Rongji. Others in attendance included, from the Chinese side, Minister of Foreign Affairs Tang Jiaxuan; Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi.
At the meeting with Premier Zhu, after short formal talks at the opening, the meeting moved to a luncheon, where opinions were exchanged in a relaxed atmosphere.
The following is an overview of the meeting.
1. Historical Perspectives
Prime Minister Koizumi stated his interest in historical issues and remarked that earlier in the day, prior to his meeting with Premier Zhu he had visited the Marco Polo Bridge. In response, Premier Zhu noted that historical issues were important and that he welcomed Prime Minister Koizumi's visits to the Marco Polo Bridge and the Museum of Hall of Chinese People's Anti-Japanese War. Premier Zhu stated that he would like Prime Minister Koizumi to understand that historical issues are a sensitive subject for the Chinese people.
2. Response to the Terrorist Attacks in the United States
Prime Minister Koizumi stated that the new laws that would be discussed in the National Diet clearly state that Japan will not resort to the use of force, explaining that this was based on remorse for the past.
In response, Premier Zhu stated that the expansion of the overseas activities of the Self-Defense Forces should be undertaken prudently and expressed his understanding that the measures against terrorism are to be taken in accordance with each country's situation.
3. Safeguard Issues
Prime Minister Koizumi stated that the issue of safeguards was causing some degree of tension in economic relations between Japan and China and expressed the hope that these issues could be promptly solved through dialogue. In response, Premier Zhu noted that some issues concerning bilateral trade should be resolved from a broad perspective through friendly consultation between the authorities concerned.
4. Other Topics
(1) Japan-China regional cooperation
Prime Minister Koizumi mentioned that after the Shanghai meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Meetings, we would hold the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)+3 (Japan, China and the Republic of Korea) Summit Meeting, pointing out that for the sake of regional development, if Japan and China were able to cooperate, it would prove positive not only for the ASEAN region, but for the prosperity of and for human exchange in Asia. In response, Premier Zhu stated that after the ASEAN+3 Summit Meeting in November, when it comes to Asia's intra-regional cooperation, the importance of Japan-China cooperation would become apparent.
(2) Economic situation
Prime Minister Koizumi noted that while he was said to be the standard bearer for reforms in Japan, Premier Zhu was known as a reformer in China, and for that reason he had wanted to meet with Premier Zhu. Prime Minister Koizumi and Premier Zhu then exchanged opinions on the economic situation and financial reforms.
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