International Dialogue

Summary of Dialogues

The Third Japan-China Dialogue Convened "Japan-China Relationship in the World"

The Global Forum of Japan (GFJ) and the China Association for International Friendly Contact (CAIFC), with support from the Tokyo Club, co-sponsored the third "Japan-China Dialogue" on the theme of "Japan-China Relationship in the World" at the International House of Japan in Tokyo on May 16-17, 2002. After a dinner on the evening of the 16th to welcome the Chinese participants hosted by Amb. Okawara Yoshio, GFJ Chairman, there was a full day of lively discussions in the morning, lunch and afternoon sessions of the 17th between the 94 participants from Japan and China.

Chairman Okawara Yoshio addressing the welcome dinner.

Cong. Hatoyama Yukio (second from right) giving keynote speech.

Centering on the Issues of Politics and Security
The Session I in the morning of the 17th was chaired by Prof. Ito Kenichi, Governor and Executive Director of GFJ, with the Dialogue centering on political and security issues.

The keynote speech was delivered by Mr. Gao Haikuan, Vice President, China Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, with the theme "Developing the China-Japan Friendly Relationship in the New Era." Mr. Gao stated that, "Past 30 years of the China-Japan Relations were, the deepest and largest era of exchanges in 2000 years. There are some people who say that the China-Japan relationship in the last one year was the ‘worst year.’ However, if both countries abide by the principles of the Joint Communique and the Friendship Treaty, there should be no issues that we can not solve. In regards to historical issues, Japan started a tumult, therefore China had to respond to it in its own way. If Japanese side admits the historical facts and does not cause any trouble, the problems will be resolved by itself. To this day, China-Japan relationship has been restricted by Japan-US relationship that has the characteristics of the military alliance. Redefinition of the Japan-US alliance, Guidelines, Law Concerning Situations in Areas Surrounding Japan, Law for the Response to an Armed Attack against Japan, are not irrelevant to the strategy of the US. I am worried about Japan being involved in the US’s war."

In response to the keynote speech, commentators put forward following opinions for and against the keynote speech. "I would like to advocate the establishment of the National Memorial Park with the support of the national consensus" (Cong. Hatoyama Yukio, GFJ Governor), "Japan showed its regret 30 years ago, and China, in appreciation of such a posture of Japan, abandoned its claim for war reparations. They should go back to this origin."(Mr. Sun Dongmin, Deputy Director, International Department, "People’s Daily") "I hope China to understand Japan’s changes correctly, instead of being too suspicious of it." (Mr. Nishikawa Megumi, Editorial Writer, "Mainichi Shimbun")

Participants exchanging the views lively in the morning session.

Chairman Ding Min delivering his speech at the Lecture Luncheon (center)

Centering on the Issues of Economics, Trade, and Finance
In the Session II in the afternoon, Mr. Cai Changwen, Director, Center for Peace and Development Studies of the CAIFC, assumed the role of the Chairperson, with discussions focusing on economics, trade, and finance. In the keynote speech entitled "The Present State and the Future Task of Japan-China Economic Relationship", Prof. Maruyama Nobuo, Takushoku University, stated that, "Japanese direct investment in China recorded 4.6million dollars in 2001, the highest record in the past. This reminds us of what happened when Japanese manufacturers advanced on Southeast Asia right after the Plaza agreement. 90% of the Japanese investment towards China is in coastal areas, and 54% is with the aim of entering the China’s domestic market. Although 70 % make a profit, 30 % is in deficit due to the price war. There are also problems such as collection of sales credits and losses caused by imitations. As a result of China’s entry into WTO, foreign companies will be treated more and more in the same manner as domestic companies. Japanese corporations will have to be more localized. It is predictable that Japanese investment into China will go ahead, but how to change the industrial structure of Japan will remain the key to solving the problems of Japan-China economic relationship in the future."

In response to this keynote speech, following comments were offered from commentators. "In the past 30 years, the annual amount of trade between China and Japan has grown from 1.1 million dollars to 88.7 million dollars and investment from Japan to China from zero to 32.1 million dollars. Both countries should endeavour to strengthen the mutual complementarity and the interdependency of their economies." (Mr. Xu Changwen, Director, Department of Asian-Pacific Studies, Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Economic Cooperation) "Reform in China has its limitations due to the absence of political reform. China should evaluate the meaning of the Cultural Revolution." (Mr. Uematsu Shuzo, Corporate Auditor, Mitsui & Co., Ltd.,) "China and Japan should jointly take leadership and cooperate strategically for the liberalization and integration of the East Asian region." (Mr. Zhou Xinzheng, Associate Research Fellow, CAIFC )

At the Lecture Luncheon, also held on the 17th, Mr. Ding Min, Honorary Chairman, History Society on China-Japan Relationship, in his lecture entitled "30-year History of China-Japan Relationship and Me," addressed that "Although economic and cultural relationships have been steadily developed, there has been a weakness in political leadership that threatened the basis of the bilateral relationship. They were Taiwan strait issues and historical issues. In the future, both countries should complement each day by bringing one’s strong points and making up for the other’s shortcomings. While competing with each other, they must cooperate at the same time in order to contribute to the development of the Asia as a whole," and left a deep impression on all 74 participants. On the evening of the 17th, a farewell dinner was held by Prof. and Mrs. Ito Kenichi, Governor and Executive Director of GFJ and his wife, at their residence. The dinner carried on until late in the evening in an amicable atmosphere with friendships being strengthened.