China-Japan third-party market cooperation not limited to B&R, official

The China-Japan third-party market cooperation is not limited to the Belt and Road (B&R) countries and regions, according to Wei Jianguo, vice chairman of China Center for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) and former Vice Minister of Commerce at the first China-Japan Third-Party Market Cooperation Forum held in Beijing on October 26, 2018.

52 third-party market cooperation agreements involving areas such as infrastructure, finance, logistics and information technology were signed at the Forum.

Wei noted that judging from the current cooperation projects, third parties involve not only B&R-related countries but also broader markets and fields, and for those who are interested in cooperating with China in third-party markets, Japan is taking the first-mover advantage.

Wei, an important promoter and planner of the China-Japan third-party market cooperation, also noted that this is the first time for the two sides to publicly announce details of all cooperative projects, which is also a respond to international scholars' concerns on the transparency, source of funds, and return on investment of projects under the B&R Initiative.

China-Japan third-party market cooperation is of great significance, meaning the China-Japan ways of cooperation can set up a model for China's cooperation with other countries, said Wei.

Based on existing discussions, more third-party market cooperation may be carried out in the fields of culture, environment, urban planning, pension, health and medicine in the future between China and Japan.

In Wei's opinion, the economic and trade ties between the two sides will shift from competition to cooperation in the following 40 years, and the two countries will jointly push forward free trade with objection to unilateralism and trade protectionism. Japan may even join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), he predicted.

Third-party market cooperation will open new paths for the two countries' practical cooperation, bring opportunities for the two sides and third parities and contribute to the prosperity of different regions as well as the stability of the world economy, said Zhong Shan, China's Minister of Commerce.

Zhong also suggested that China and Japan should focus on innovating the open and win-win cooperation model, building more trade promotion platforms and establishing information sharing platform and training mechanism, in a bid to promote China-Japan third-party market cooperation.

If an international bank syndicate can be formed between China and Japan to jointly develop third-party markets in the future, then the two countries will enjoy better reputation and more convenience, said Wei.

Besides, China's products and Japan's high and new technology can be combined and promoted globally. In the next step, China may strengthen its cooperation with Japan in the intelligence field, such as promoting Alipay and WeChat pay in Japan and jointly developing service robots, noted Wei.

Editor: 曹家宁