China and Japan are standing at a "new starting point" of bilateral ties, said Chinese State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan on Sunday, calling for consolidated political foundation for long-term and stable development of China-Japan relations.
Tang made the remarks when meeting with Fuyushiba Tetsuzo, Japanese Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, who is visiting China at the invitation of China National Tourism Administration.
"The two countries have already broken the five-year-long political stalemate and brought bilateral ties to the normal track of development," Tang said, referring to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's "successful" China trip in October.
"Standing at a new starting point, the two sides should work closely to add momentum to the long-term and stable development of their relations, which is not only a common mission for the two governments but also serves the two nations' interests and meets expectation of the two peoples, Tang said.
The two countries enjoy great potential for closer cooperation, the state councilor said, adding various circles of both sides are enthusiastic to boost cooperation.
Chinese President Hu Jintao and Prime Minister Abe met again in November, following their October meeting, in Vietnam on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. Premier Wen Jiabao will meet with Prime Minister Abe in the Philippines later this month, according to Tang.
He said that the political and economic foundation of bilateral relations should be fortified, and understanding between the two peoples should be promoted.
Meanwhile, the Japanese side should properly handle sensitive historical issues and its ties with Taiwan, Tang told Fuyushiba Tetsuzo.
Fuyushiba Tetsuzo said it is a priority of Japan to improve and develop relations with China.
Japan will make efforts to further enhance bilateral exchanges and cooperation in various areas such as tourism, air transportation and education, he said.
Tang also spoke highly of the contribution Fuyushiba Tetsuzo and the Japanese Komei Party have made in breaking bilateral political stalemate and promoting China-Japan friendship.
It is the first overseas trip of Fuyushiba Tetsuzo since he was appointed as Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport by Prime Minister Abe in September.