Tokyo: Japan`s new foreign minister today
said that the international community should encourage China
to observe global rules and play fair rather than become a
Koichiro Genba said the Asia-Pacific region is a center
of growth but also a source of instability. Tokyo has
expressed caution over China`s increased military spending and
more assertive stance in territorial disputes.
Ties between the two Asian rivals deteriorated to their
worst level in years last September when a Chinese fishing
trawler collided with Japanese patrol vessels near islands
controlled by Japan but claimed by both countries in the East
China Sea. Genba acknowledged that Japan`s southwestern waters
have grown unstable.
"China has overtaken Japan in terms of GDP and is now
boosting its self-confidence. In order not to allow China to
become a threat, Japan and the rest of the world must make
sure China plays fair as part of our common rules and
principles," Genba said.
While growing in military strength and assertiveness,
Beijing denies threatening or aspiring to dominate the region,
calling such speculation a sign of "Cold War thinking."
Genba, Japan`s youngest foreign minister at age 47, took
office last Friday as part of new Prime Minister Yoshihiko
He said relations between Japan and China are extremely
important and they should be good neighbours. He vowed to
achieve "a win-win situation" through a mutually beneficial