BEIJING, Dec. 10 (Xinhua) -- Ruling parties of China and Japan on Thursday pledged to deepen trust and work together for a stronger strategic relationship of mutual benefit between the two countries.
The pledge came out of a meeting between Chinese President Hu Jintao and Secretary General of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) Ichiro Ozawa in Beijing on Thursday afternoon.
Chinese President Hu Jintao (R) meets with Secretary General of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) Ichiro Ozawa in Beijing, capital of China, Dec. 10, 2009. Ozawa led a delegation of 600-strong members for a four-day visit in Beijing. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
Ozawa is leading a delegation of 600-strong members, including 146 DPJ lawmakers from the upper and lower houses of the Japanese Diet, for a four-day visit in Beijing.
The group is the first DPJ-led delegation to China since the DPJ came to power in September.
Hu started the meeting by calling Ozawa "an old friend of the Chinese people who visited China many times and made important contribution to bilateral relations."
Chinese President Hu Jintao (R) shakes hands with members of a delegation led by Ichiro Ozawa, secretary general of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), in Beijing, capital of China, Dec. 10, 2009. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
This was the third meeting in Beijing between Hu and Ozawa, who visited China in capacity of the DPJ leader in 2006 and 2007.
"The Communist Party of China (CPC) attaches great importance to relations with DPJ and would like to work together to improve party-to-party exchange mechanism," said Hu, who is the general secretary of the CPC Central Committee.
Hu called for concerted efforts to make the mechanism an important platform for the two ruling parties to hold dialogues, enhance trust, promote cooperation and seek common development in a bid to boost the sound and in-depth growth of bilateral relationship.
Ozawa echoed Hu's views, saying the DPJ was committed to bolstering Japan-China ties and would continue to make best of the party-to-party exchange mechanism for a better strategic relationship of mutual benefit.
On the broader China-Japan relations, Hu said the two countries had interacted actively and undergone a smooth transition since the DPJ became Japan's ruling party in September.
Hu said he and Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama reached important consensus on furthering the strategic relationship of mutual benefit and bringing the bilateral relationship to a new era.
Stressing the principle and spirit of four political documents between the two countries, Hu said China would like to work more closely with Japan to properly address the sensitive issues between them and jointly tackle global challenges.
Ozawa praised China's economic and social progress and its constructive role in international affairs.
Ozawa said profound changes in the international arena offered a broad prospect for Japan and China to work together in all fronts.
Prior to the two leaders' meeting, Hu and the Japanese delegation had their group photos taken at the Great Hall of the People in downtown Beijing.
The delegation was the 16th one under the "Great Wall Program," a people-to-people exchange scheme initiated in 1989. The program has so far sent about 350 Japanese lawmakers and more than 2,000 representatives from various circles to visit China.