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INTERNATIONAL > East Asia & Pacific

Abe to invite Xi to visit Japan as state guest

  • June 25, 2019
  • , Asahi
  • JMH Summary

Asahi wrote that when meeting with Chinese President Xi in Osaka on Thursday, Prime Minister Abe is likely to invite him to visit Japan as a state guest next spring. The daily explained that Xi’s Osaka trip will be his first visit to Japan since he took office seven years ago, saying that although Beijing had effectively turned down a Japanese proposal that he visit Japan twice this year – for the G20 in June and later as a state guest, the Chinese leader has become positive about traveling to Japan. The paper said the fact that he told a senior LDP official in April that he plans to attend the G20 is indicative of the importance he attaches to Japan given that foreign trips by top Chinese officials are usually announced only a few weeks ahead. While noting that President Xi had taken a critical approach toward Japan initially over Japan’s nationalization of the Senkaku Islands, the inauguration of the Trump administration and its hard line toward Beijing over trade and the South China Sea prompted him to seek rapprochement with Tokyo. Xi reportedly commented on U.S.-Japan relations in May to an unnamed senior foreign government official by saying: “When it comes to trade talks with the U.S., Japan’s situation is similar to that of China. I think there are things that we can work together on.”   

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