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Door open for Japan in Belt and Road

By Zhang Yunbi | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-07 07:35

The Belt and Road Initiative can become an "experimental field" for China and Japan to achieve mutually beneficial cooperation and common development, Beijing said on Tuesday.

The Foreign Ministry's remark was made after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in a speech on Monday that Tokyo is ready to work with Beijing on the initiative, with conditions.

Conditions proposed by Abe include "harmony with a free and fair Trans-Pacific economic zone".He also said it is "critical for infrastructure to be open to use by all and to be developed through procurement that is transparent and fair", Japan's Kyodo News Agency reported.

In response, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Tuesday that Beijing had taken notice of Abe's remarks.

Japan is welcome to talk with China about introducing cooperation within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, Hua said.

"We also hope that the Japanese can translate its will of improving bilateral ties into tangible actions," she added.

Naoya Yoshino, deputy editor of Japan's Nikkei Business Daily newspaper, commented in an article on Tuesday that Abe's "conditional" support "tells Beijing that Tokyo is ready to work toward warmer bilateral ties".

Lyu Yaodong, a Japanese diplomacy researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, noted that Tokyo is "adapting itself to the evolving trend" of win-win cooperation as it tones down its negative stance toward the initiative.

"What China has proposed lives up to the interests of regional stakeholders, and it (the initiative) has won recognition by the international community, a fact that offers no excuse for Tokyo to continue defying it," Lyu said.


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