China and Japan hold high-level trade talks as trade deal nears

China and Japan hold high-level trade talks as trade deal nears

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will meet with his Japanese counterpart today in what will be the first high-level economic

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Photo: AP

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will meet with his Japanese counterpart today in what will be the first high-level economic dialogue between the two countries in nearly a decade.

While ties between Tokyo and Beijing have a troubled history, relations seem to have strengthened following Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s diplomatic visit in January. The door is now open to build upon the countries’ $350 billion trade partnership.

Currently in the works is a free trade agreement between Japan, China, and South Korea, who together account for nearly a fifth of global GDP. Despite having been proposed in 2012, the deal’s progress has been prevented by escalating. However, talks resumed last month with all sides expressing interest in a swift resolution.

With China and South Korea already boasting a successful trade deal, today’s talks will strengthen the Sino-Japanese relationship, which is perhaps the weakest link between the three and an important step ahead of the next trilateral summit come next month.