Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Chinese National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, and Japanese House of Representatives Speaker Tamisuke Watanuki and House of Councilors President Hiroyuki Ku rata Friday exchanged views on issues of common interest in a frank and deep-going way.
During their separate talks in Tokyo Friday morning, Watanuki said last year saw the 30th anniversary of normalization of Sino-Japanese diplomatic relations and that this year sees the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Sino-Japanese Treaty of Peace and Friendship. "At this moment, we are glad to accommodate Wu's visit, which will consolidate Sino-Japanese friendship."
Ku rata said over 400 Japanese lawmakers are members of the parliamentarians' association for Japan-China friendship, which is the largest of its kind in Japan with its friendly countries. It is important to continue exchange between the Japanese parliament and the Chinese NPC, he added.
Wu said he was deeply impression by the welcoming reception hosted by the two parliament leaders Thursday evening. "I can feel the friendly sentiments of the Japanese people for the Chinese people. And I also bring with me the Chinese people's friendly sentiments for the Japanese people."
The Sino-Japanese relations as a whole are good, Wu said, adding that he will make extensive contacts with people from all walks of life in Japan during his stay.
According to Wu, in 2002, Sino-Japanese trade volume exceeded US$100 billion, 3.6 million people exchanged visits between the two countries, and 229 pairs of cities in Japan and China have established twin-sisterly relationship.
Wu also expressed thanks to the Japanese government and people for their support and help to China in dealing with SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) earlier this year.
Wu will meet with Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, and Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi later in the event-packed day.
He is also scheduled to attend a welcoming luncheon hosted by Japan's business circles and a ceremony celebrating the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Sino-Japanese Treaty of Peace and Friendship in the evening.
Wu is paying an official good-will visit to Japan, the third stop of his three-nation trip, which has already taken him to the Philippines and South Korea.
(Xinhua News Agency September 5, 2003)