On June 8, 2011, Chief Chinese Member of the Fifth 21st Century Committee for China-Japan Friendship Tang Jiaxuan received the exclusive interview of Chief of China Bureau, Kyodo News Agency Kato Yasushi in Beijing.
Tang first of all asked Kyodo News Agency to convey his sincere condolence to the Japanese people in the disaster areas. He said that the Chinese government and society extended condolence and provided various forms of assistance to Japan immediately after the earthquake took place. Chinese leaders also extended condolences to the Japanese side. President Hu especially went to the Japanese embassy in China expressing grief over the victims. The Chinese government dispatched an international rescue team to the disaster areas in a timely manner and provided material assistances. All sectors of the Chinese society, including the Chinese members of the 21st Century Committee for China-Japan Friendship donated actively. This fully demonstrates the friendly feeling between the Chinese and Japanese people. Premier Wen particularly visited the disaster-hit people in Miyagi and Fukushima when he attended the China-Japan-South Korea leaders' meeting not long ago, once again expressing the sincere sympathy and encouragement of the Chinese people for the Japanese people.
Tang said that the Japanese government and people of all walks of life made huge efforts and people in the disaster areas displayed calmness, order and the moving spirit of mutual help faced with the unprecedented severe test. People in the disaster areas actively helped themselves and assisted each other after the outbreak of the earthquake, and people in other areas also extended help actively. Many Japanese people shared their already very scarce materials or even sacrificed their precious lives to help those Chinese around them whom they barely know. The spirit of perseverance and solidarity shown by the Japanese people in front of the disaster will become a fortune for Japan's post-disaster reconstruction. He believes the Japanese people are able to overcome difficulties and rebuild their home.
He stressed that mankind share the same fate in front of massive natural disasters and it is especially true to China and Japan which are close neighbors separated only by a strip of water. We will never forget the valuable support provided by the Japanese government, society and people after Wenchuan earthquake. The Chinese government and society immediately extended help after Japan suffered the earthquake. In particular, the care and condolence expressed by the Chinese leaders further enhanced the friendly feeling between the Chinese and Japanese people, enriched the bilateral strategic and mutually beneficial relations and boosted the development of bilateral ties.
Answering the question on how to develop China-Japan relations in the new era, Tang pointed out that the core of the strategic and mutually beneficial relations between China and Japan is to boost the long-term healthy and stable development of bilateral relations, realize mutually beneficial cooperation, win-win outcome and friendship from generation to generation and make contributions to world peace and prosperity in line with the principles of the four political documents between China and Japan. As countries with major influence in the world and major economies, China and Japan are having more common interest and challenges. The two sides should treat each other as friendly partner and support each other in pursuing the road of peaceful development. Both sides should firmly adhere to the development direction of bilateral relations from a strategic point of view and appropriately handle differences. They should increase coordination and cooperation in the international affairs, especially Asian affairs so as to play a constructive role to promote common prosperity and development of Asia and Pacific and the integration process of Asia. China-Japan relations are based on the friendship between the people. The bilateral cultural and people-to-people contacts must be strengthened, especially exchanges between youth of both countries, in order to pass on the bilateral friendship from one generation to another.
Talking about strengthening China-Japan cooperation on Japan's post-disaster reconstruction, he said that Premier Wen and Prime Minister Naoto Kan reached a number of important consensuses on developing China-Japan relations and supporting Japan's post-disaster reconstruction in their bilateral meeting held when Premier Wen attended the China-Japan-South Korea leaders' meeting in Japan. The two countries should completely implement the consensuses, step up cooperation in all fronts and enrich the connotation of China-Japan strategic and mutually beneficial relations. First, they should enhance cooperation in coping with disasters, conduct joint researches on disaster forecast and conduct emergency relief and rescue collaboration. In terms of handling the nuclear accident, we understand the situation and difficulties faced by the Japanese side and have noticed the efforts Japan has made. We also hope Japan understands the concerns and feeling of its neighboring countries and steps up communications and cooperation with relevant departments of China. Second, they should push forward energy cooperation and explore closer cooperation in the fields of clean energy, renewable energy and nuclear energy security. Third, the transfer and upgrading of bilateral trade and economic cooperation should be accelerated, new areas and bright spots of trade and economic cooperation should be expanded, green, low carbon and cycling economy should be vigorously advanced. A number of major demonstration projects should try to be launched so as to bring greater benefits to the people.