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China, S. Korea and Japan meet for key talks

04-07-2012 14:09 BJT

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Top diplomats from China, South Korea, and Japan start two-days of talks in the eastern Chinese city of Ningbo on Saturday. It's the sixth Foreign Ministerial meeting among the three neighbours. Regional trade cooperation and security is expected to top the agenda.

There are high expectations on greater regional economic integration.

China, Japan and South Korea believe more open markets and lower tariffs among them will shift Asian growth from quantity to quality.

Recently, the three countries have signed a trilateral investment agreement, moving one step nearer a full trade agreement.

But there are still some barriers.

Wang Yuzhu, researcher of Global and Asia-Pacific Strategy Academy, CASS, said, "Japan's position has changed a lot now. They're really pushing for economic integration. But South Korea hopes to build a China-South Korea free trade zone first because of its presidential election this year. Having said that, we may face some pressure on coordination at this meeting."

But leaders hope pragmatic negotiation can work this time, so they could open the regional free trade zone by the end of this year.

Besides trade cooperation, the DPRK's planned rocket launch is also expected to be discussed on the sidelines.

Wang Yuzhu said, "China's position has always been clear. We hope to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, and achieve nuclear non-proliferation on the peninsula. China will continue to push this at the meeting."

It is hoped the three countries can reach a unanimous position on the DPRK's planned satellite launch.

On the economic front, with highly complementary and competing industries among the countries, it is expected regional trade resources can be combined into a complete industry chain, with each country benefitting from sustained trade-driven economic growth.

 

Editor:Liu Fang |Source: CNTV.CN

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