Visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao met in Tokyo on Thursday with four former Japanese prime ministers and attended the inauguration of the China-Japan Friendly Exchange Year of Youth in 2008.
While having breakfast with Yasuhiro Nakasone, Toshiki Kaifu, Yoshiro Mori and Shinzo Abe, Hu said the China-Japan relationship is one of the most important bilateral relations for both countries.
Chinese President Hu Jintao (C), Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda (1st R) and Former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone attend the opening ceremony of the 2008 Japan-China youth friendly exchange year at the Waseda University in Tokyo, capital of Japan, May 8, 2008.
In the changing world, China and Japan are facing more common issues and responsibilities, and are sharing more common interests and larger room for development, Hu said. The China-Japan relations have exceeded the bilateral domain and are exerting stronger regional and global influence.
"The situation requests the two sides to earnestly think about and map out the future of the China-Japan relations from a strategic and long-term perspective," Hu said.
Nakasone voiced his belief that the two countries' fourth political document signed Wednesday -- the China-Japan joint statement on all-round promotion of strategic and mutually beneficial relations -- will lead the bilateral relations to a better future.
Chinese President Hu Jintao (R) talks with Japanese table tennis player Ai Fukuhara (L) during the opening ceremony of the 2008 Japan-China youth friendly exchange year at the Waseda University in Tokyo, capital of Japan, May 8, 2008.
Kaifu stressed the importance of candid exchange of views when dealing with problems between the two countries. He called on the two sides to strengthen communication in all fields, especially between young people.
Mori expressed his views on the development of Africa and hoped that China and Japan will enhance cooperation to make joint contribution to peace and development of the continent.
Abe said that the exchange of visits by leaders of the two countries is of great importance to the improvement and advancement of bilateral ties and is conducive to the promotion of bilateral strategic and mutually beneficial relations.
Later in the day, Hu attended the opening ceremony of the China-Japan Friendly Exchange Year of Youth in Tokyo's Waseda University, calling on the youths of the two countries to join hands in shouldering the great responsibility of promoting and carrying forward the China-Japan friendship.