Political disputes between China and Japan should not overshadow the development of their economic and trade cooperation, says an article in People's Daily overseas edition. An excerpt follows:
During a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on the sidelines of the Asian-African Summit on April 23, President Hu Jintao made a five-point proposal to solve the long-standing disputes between China and Japan.
A sensible attitude toward Sino-Japanese economic and trade cooperation is conducive to the further development of each economy, and will help improve bilateral ties.
China and Japan are crucial to each other in terms of economic and trade cooperation. Over the past 33 years, Sino-Japanese economic and trade relations have grown fast; trade volume has increased 160-fold.
The difference between Chinese and Japanese economic structures means economic and trade cooperation should be complementary. Substantial amounts of cash and advanced technologies from Japan have been injected into China's economy, bringing about dynamic structural adjustments and more job opportunities.
As a new member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), China is willing to shoulder its responsibilities and abide by WTO regulations. So China must treat foreign commodities in the Chinese market fairly and protect the legal rights of foreign investors.
Being a WTO member, China has generated an impressive growth in foreign trade volume but also has trade conflicts with other economies.
Recently, some Japanese right-wing attitudes towards Japan's wartime history and the Taiwan question have evoked a strong aversion among some Chinese consumers to products made in Japan. This aversion is detrimental to the interests of manufacturers and consumers in both countries, and is likely to scar Sino-Japanese cooperation.
To minimize the negative consequences, the Japanese side must be sincere in admitting its history of aggression, and Chinese customers should keep a cool mind. Against the background of economic globalization, boycotting Japanese products will have a negative effect on both economies.
(China Daily May 9, 2005)