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Japan biz leaders, China officials agree to maintain free trade

  • September 10, 2019
  • , Jiji Press , 09:16 p.m.
  • English Press
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Beijing, Sept. 10 (Jiji Press)–Japanese business leaders and senior Chinese Commerce Ministry officials on Tuesday confirmed the need to maintain free trade.

“There’s no other way for Japan to develop than to utilize the benefits of globalism to the fullest,” Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Akio Mimura said in their meeting in Beijing.

Shoji Muneoka, adviser at Nippon Steel Corp. <5401>, expressed concerns that the U.S.-China trade war threatens to undermine global growth.

Chinese Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said his country will promote a multilateral trade system as opposed to unilateralism.

But Zhong, apparently referring to the trade war with Washington, said Beijing will stand up to fight if there is anyone who picks a fight with it.

Zhong also said China will speed up market-opening efforts and promote World Trade Organization reform to raise the status of developing countries.

He stressed that the Chinese market has great potential, urging Japanese companies to maintain their presence in China amid moves to shift manufacturing out of the country to avoid high costs.

Mimura thanked the Chinese side for lifting its ban on imports of rice grown in the central Japan prefecture of Niigata in November last year.

He asked China to act more to remove or ease restrictions on Japanese farm products that were imposed following the March 2011 triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

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