Minister of Commerce Bo Xilai said in Beijing Monday he hopes China and Japan will join hands to continue promoting bilateral trade cooperation based upon the existing foundation, realizing mutual benefits.
Bo made the remarks when meeting with a delegation from the Japanese Council for the Promotion of International Trade, headed by Ryutaro Hashimoto, president of the council and former Japanese prime minister.
Bo said China is willing to actively promote the cooperation among itself, Japan and the Republic of Korea, and the cooperation of the three countries and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (10+3).
"China always pays attention to developing Sino-Japanese trade and economic cooperation," Bo said. Since China embraced its reform and opening-up policies 26 years ago, Sino-Japanese trade ties progressed rapidly.
From 1993 to 2003, Japan was China's biggest trade partner for the 11 successive years. By February 2005, Japan's direct investment in China had totaled US$47.9 billion.
Bo said China and Japan enjoy "very broad cooperation areas," not only in manufacturing and infrastructure construction, but also in the services industry and environmental protection and resource exploration. China has a huge domestic market, which provides rich soil for the further deepening of Sino-Japanese trade cooperation.
Hashimoto said Japanese enterprises hold positive attitudes towards their trade cooperation with China, and will further expand cooperation to realize common development.
(Xinhua News Agency April 5, 2005)