On the afternoon of September 28, 2010, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu held a regular press conference and answered questions.
Jiang Yu: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. First of all, I would like to tell you that after the press conference, we are honored to have Vice Foreign Minister Fu Ying and Vice Foreign Minister Zhai Jun here to brief you on Premier Wen Jiabao's upcoming visits to the Hellenic Republic, Belgium, Italy and Turkey and attendance at the 8th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) and the 13th China- EU Summit. Your presence will be welcome.
Now, the floor is open.
Q: Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan said lately that Japan refuses to offer China apologies and compensation for the collision incident. Yesterday, Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshito Sengoku asked China to cover the repair cost of the damaged Japanese patrol vessels. How do you comment?
A: Japan should shoulder due responsibilities as its patrol vessels rammed and damaged the Chinese fishing boat while besieging and chasing it in China's territorial waters. China attaches importance to bilateral relations. To maintain stable and sound development of bilateral relations, the two sides should work together to meet each other halfway and Japan should take candid and pragmatic actions.
Q: Japan hopes to arrange a meeting between its Prime Minister and Chinese Premier on the sidelines of ASEM next month. Will China accept the proposal?
A: I haven't heard of such information so far.
Q: It is reported that Chinese fishery administration boats will carry out regular patrols in the waters off the Diaoyu Island. Please confirm.
A: The waters off the Diaoyu Island are traditional fishing grounds for Chinese fishermen. China dispatches fishery law-enforcement boats to maintain fishing order and protect safety of life and property of Chinese fishermen, which are fishery administration activities in accordance with China's relevant laws and regulations. We hope Japan stop tracking and disrupting Chinese fishery law-enforcement boats.
Q: Is there any possibility of a China-Japan summit on the margins of ASEM in Belgium next week?
A: I am not aware of any information in this regard. We hope Japan take concrete steps and make positive efforts to mend bilateral ties.
Q: It is reported that some Chinese investment projects in Myanmar cause issues locally due to unequal distribution of benefits, such as damage to the environment and impact on the locals' traditional way of life. How do you comment?
A: As friendly close neighbors, China and Myanmar conduct friendly and mutually beneficial cooperation for the well-being of the two peoples. We support competent Chinese enterprises investing in Myanmar as our mutually beneficial cooperation is conducive to the economic and social development of Myanmar. At the same time, we have always asked Chinese enterprises and individuals to abide by local laws and regulations, live in harmony with the local people, pay attention to environmental protection and stick to the principle of sustainable development while doing business there. We hope the friendly and mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Myanmar forge ahead in a sound manner and issues that arise be properly handled through friendly consultations.
Q: Please update us on the four Japanese nationals detained in Hebei Province last week, such as where they are now and how they will be handled. Besides, do you have any comment on the conference of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), the election of new leader in particular?
A: Relevant information has already been released. As far as I know, the case is under investigation. We have made consular notification to the Japanese side as per the China-Japan Consular Agreement and granted consular access at Japan's request.
On questions relating to the WPK conference, I suggest you refer to competent authorities. We wish the conference a success and the DPRK people new progress in various undertakings under the leadership of the WPK.
Q: Kim Jong Un, the third son of Kim Jong Il was appointed general today and is likely to be the successor. How do you comment?
A: The DPRK side has made a series of personnel arrangements before and during the conference, which is its internal affairs.
Q: When will China's countermeasures against Japan over the Diaoyu Island collision incident come to an end? There are speculations in Japan that the detention of the four Japanese in Hebei has some connection to the collision incident. How do you comment?
A: Japan's illegal detention of the Chinese fishermen and fishing boat has aroused strong indignation among the Chinese people and severely damaged China-Japan relations. China has no choice but to adopt countermeasures in response to Japan's relevant acts. Japan should adopt concrete actions to eliminate the negative effect on China-Japan relations brought by the incident and make practical efforts to mend bilateral relations.
On your second question, the two incidents are completely different in nature. I believe the case will be handled according to law in a just manner.
Q: There are many comments and analyses on the Diaoyu Island collision incident. Some reports say the incident shows that Japan's relative weakness makes other neighbors of China worry about China's peaceful rise. Some reports talk about the possibility of strengthening ties between the ASEAN countries and the US in order to counter China's influence. How do you comment?
A: China's attitude is firm and clear towards issues bearing on national territory and state sovereignty. However, we hold that relevant issues should be peacefully settled through friendly consultation with countries concerned according to international law. At the last press conference, some journalists also asked about how China and the ASEAN countries handle issues concerning the South China Sea and I gave detailed introduction on China's position. Pursuing a foreign policy of friendship towards neighboring countries, China's development is peaceful and cooperative. We unswervingly follow the path of peaceful development and exercise opening strategies of mutual benefits and win-win outcome. We have maintained sound cooperative relations with the ASEAN countries with friendship and cooperation being the mainstream of China's relations with neighboring countries. We always stand for peaceful settlement of disputes through bilateral consultations. I believe ASEAN and its Dialogue Partners will have dialogues in the spirit of mutual respect on an equal footing, which should be conducive to enhancing political trust, good-neighborly friendship and common development of countries in the region.
Q: It is reported that China's restrictions on rare earth export to Japan are related to the collision incident. Please confirm. Besides, how do you comment on China-US trade spats and the US House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee's passage of a bill regarding the RMB exchange rate?
A: The Ministry of Commerce has already responded to the issue of rare earth export to Japan.
China has repeatedly expounded its principled position on the RMB exchange rate issue. I have no more to add here.
It is in the common interest of both China and the US to maintain sound and stable development of China-US trade and economic relations. We urge relevant US congressmen to recognize the significance of bilateral trade and economic relations, and not to seek excuses to practice protectionism against China so as to refrain from any damage to the overall China-US trade and economic cooperation.
Q: Yesterday, Chinese and Russian Presidents held discussions covering a wide range of topics including BRIC cooperation. Could you give us more details? Did they touch upon cooperation among China, Russia and India?
A: Russian President Medvedev made a successful visit to China and we released information on the meetings and talks he had with Chinese leaders yesterday. I'll come back to you if I get any information about their discussions on BRIC cooperation. At present, the BRIC countries are enjoying wider scope and mature mechanism of cooperation on a clearly chartered course. We hope the four countries further boost coordination, consolidate foundation of cooperation and expand cooperative areas so as to safeguard the common interest of developing countries.
China, Russia and India also have established a cooperation mechanism which is of positive importance to promoting mutual trust among the three, expanding exchanges and pragmatic cooperation as well as promoting multilateralism and democratization of international relations. Highly valuing BRIC cooperation, we are ready to make joint efforts with the other three countries towards democratization of international relations, a more equitable and reasonable international order as well as the recovery and robust, sustainable and balanced growth of the world economy.
Q: Recently there are some negative reports on India holding 2010 Commonwealth Games. Do you have any comment?
A: Holding large scale international games is quite a challenge for any country. I believe the Indian Government has made tremendous efforts for the Commonwealth Games and I wish the Games a great success.
Q: According to reports, Venezuelan President Chavez will visit China before the end of this year. Please confirm.
A: I'm unaware of this information.
China and Venezuela maintain frequent high-level exchanges and we welcome President Chavez to China again at a time convenient to both.
Q: What exact steps does China want Japan to take to improve bilateral ties?
A: If Japan really values China-Japan relations, it should take concrete measures to mend bilateral ties. We hope China and Japan work together to meet each other halfway so as to bring bilateral relations to the right track. Whether China-Japan relations could come back to the right track lies with Japan's attitude and actions.
If there are no more questions, thanks for coming! See you!