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Wednesday, 18 April 2018 00:00

Beijing - Tokyo Relationships

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After having been quite a long time Japan and China’s relationship have not been good due to territorial dispute issues, last Monday (April 16, 2018), Japan welcomes Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi 's visit to Tokyo with an invitation to have warm bilateral relations. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe conveyed his call amidst a vulnerable security situation in Northeast Asia due to North Korean missile threats. Abe wants cooperation with China to encourage the North Korean ruling regime to stop its nuclear program. The role of the PRC is expected to bring North Korea to the negotiating table with the United States and Japan. Some time ago, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un visited Beijing and met with President Xi Jin Ping. Instead Abe will meet President Trump to discuss the halt of China's nuclear-assisted program. In an effort unsupported by North Korea, Japan supports a trilateral meeting between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, with Chinese Prime Minister Li Ke Qiang and South Korean President Moon Jae-in scheduled to be held in May. The positive signs on Korean peninsula issues are North and South Korea’s plans for bilateral meetings as well as meeting between Kim Jong Un and President Trump. China and Japan have good reason to agree to improve relations. In addition to security concerns in the region, it seems also due to the policy of the US President Donald Trump in the form of import tariff plans from China and Japan. Trump even requested that the two countries open up a wider market for US goods. Although not specifically talking about US policy plans, the meeting between Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Foreign Minister Taro Kono remained to discuss global economic changes. The Japanese Foreign Minister said that both countries are aware, if starting a trade war, can affect the prosperity of the global economy. Instead Wang said that Japan understands how to keep the rules of the game in the WTO. Both countries are taking measures to maintain a free trade system under the WTO and to build a more open economy together. Improving relations between China and Japan is certainly something positive. Both have a great influence because they are world economic power today.For Indonesia this becomes an opportunity and a challenge. It is opportunity because because improving relationships makes Indonesia free to build relationships with both countries. But it becomes a challenge because Indonesia's products become more difficult to enter the market as they have to compete with similar products from both countries. But more importantly, what is the common desire of all parties are creating peace in the East Asia region.

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