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State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi Had a Phone Call with Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi

2020-07-29

On 29 July, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi spoke with Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi on the phone.

Wang said that since the start of COVID-19, China and Japan have maintained communication and extended mutual support in responding to the disease, which is a reflection of the traditional friendship between the two neighboring countries. In a world with raging epidemic, deep recession and growing uncertainties, the two countries, as important neighbors and major economies, need to keep bilateral relations on the right track, and enhance cooperation in combating the disease, promoting economic recovery and upholding peace and stability in the region.

Wang noted the overall trend of improvement and development in bilateral ties. Practical cooperation has grown steadily, and two-way trade in the first six months reached the same level of last year, both of which are hard-won results. The two countries need to plan for and push forward bilateral exchanges and cooperation in the coming months and beyond COVID-19, and jointly tackle global and regional challenges, so as to inject new impetus into bilateral ties. Wang called for efforts in the following areas:

First, enhancing dialogues and exchanges at all levels and through various channels. The two sides need to advance existing consultation and dialogue mechanisms, encourage exchanges and interactions between government departments, industries, social groups and localities through appropriate means, and speed up the establishment of a "fast lane" to facilitate personnel exchanges.

Second, resuming and expanding mutually beneficial cooperation. China welcomes Japan's commitment to deepen bilateral cooperation by seizing the new momentum and opportunities created by China's development. China sets great store by the reopening of Japanese businesses in China and has adopted a host of supportive measures toward that end. Likewise, China also hopes Japan could create a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory environment for the normal operation of Chinese businesses.

Third, strengthening communication and cooperation on regional and international affairs. As defenders and champions of multilateralism and free trade, China and Japan should continue to firmly support the WTO, ASEAN Plus Three, G20 and other multilateral mechanisms in playing their due role, ensure RCEP's conclusion within the year, accelerate China-Japan-ROK FTA negotiations, and contribute to economic recovery in the region and beyond. The two countries also need to maintain cooperation in fighting COVID-19, reject politicization of the disease, oppose misguided comments and actions that disrupt and undermine global cooperation, and support WHO in fulfilling its duties.

Wang stressed that given the complex international situation, the two sides need to act on the important consensus between their leaders, properly and prudently handle differences and disputes, focus on advancing mutually beneficial cooperation, and work together for the sound, stable and sustained growth of bilateral ties.

Motegi expressed Japan's readiness to work with China to take bilateral relations forward. He noted that the exchange of sympathy messages between the two Foreign Ministers over floods is a testament to the friendship between the two countries. Japan stands ready to maintain dialogue and communication with China at various levels, and promote personnel exchanges and economic, trade and investment cooperation between the two sides while keeping the epidemic under control. Motegi reaffirmed Japan's support for the early signing of RCEP.

The two Foreign Ministers also had an in-depth exchange of views on other issues of mutual interest.

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