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Trilateral meeting viewed as positive for regional integration

Updated: May 10,2018 5:15 PM

Premier Li Keqiang, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and ROK’s President Moon Jae-in attended the seventh China-Japan-South Korea leaders’ meeting in Tokyo on May 9. The trilateral meeting was viewed as of great significance to further promoting Southeast Asia’s stable development by several major foreign media outlets, including Financial Times, Reuters, The Straits Times, and NHK.

The Straits Times and Reuters viewed it as an opportunity for regional integration and a strong signal for solidarity. “Faced with the severe situation of rising protectionism and unilateralism, China, Japan and South Korea should hold together firmly to support free trade and jointly defend rules-based multilateral trade system,” Premier Li said at the meeting.

The Straits Times cited the new cooperation mode of “China-Japan-ROK+X” brought up by Premier Li, which are joint projects in such areas as capacity cooperation, poverty reduction, disaster management and energy conservation.

Japan’s Kyodo News and Financial Times focused more on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which is aimed at promoting the common interests of Southeast Asia, including India, Australia, New Zealand and ASEAN countries.

Korea’s Yonhap News Agency put its emphasis on deepening enterprises’ cooperation through the spirit of inclusiveness and innovation, which was mentioned by all three leaders during the business summit, in an effort to jointly ensure a fair competitive environment while being prepared for the upcoming fourth industrial revolution.

According to Lee Jong-heon, secretary general of the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat, over the last 19 years, with high-level meetings as the core and supported by 21 ministerial conferences and 70 lower-level exchanges, China, Japan and South Korea have established a multilateral cooperation system and achieved great results.