Japan's prime minister repeats call for talks with China during November APEC meeting

Shinzo Abe hopes to have a summit meeting with Xi Jinping when the two leaders attend November's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation talks in Beijing, he said in Brazil on Saturday

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 03 August, 2014, 3:49pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 03 August, 2014, 4:27pm

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Saturday reiterated his desire to meet with China’s President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit talks in Beijing in November.

“I hope to have a Japan-China summit meeting during the APEC forum in November,” Abe said at a press conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil when asked about strained relations between the two Asian neighbours.

“Japan and China should talk because we have issues to solve.”
Shinzo Abe

“Japan and China should talk because we have issues to solve,” he said. “My door is always open for dialogue, and I would like China to have the same attitude.”

Since assuming the premiership for the second time in December 2012, Abe has been unable to hold one-on-one talks with Xi as the two countries remain at odds over territory and perceptions of history.

Beijing has said there will be no summit talks unless Tokyo changes its stance on some Japan-controlled, China-claimed islands in the East China Sea.

On the issue of Russia’s support of separatists in Ukraine, Abe said Japan will continue to work closely with its Group of Seven (G7) partners for a peaceful solution while saying “no schedule has been set up” for a visit to Japan by Russian President Vladimir Putin later this year.

As for the Japanese economy, Abe stressed that his policy of giving it top priority remains unchanged as he is determined to pull it out of deflation.

Japan will also accelerate work on legislation for a major security policy shift that would enable the country to come to the defence of allies under armed attack by exercising the right to collective self-defence, he said.