BEIJING — Japan pledged to provide Beijing with an aid package worth more than 200 billion yen Sept. 4, the first day of Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto’s four-day visit to China.

Hashimoto, who arrived in Beijing earlier in the day, joined Chinese Premier Li Peng in a signing ceremony to officially approve the aid deal, which culminated at the end of two hours and 20 minutes of talks between the two leaders. The 202.9 billion yen credit line is part of Japan’s fourth low-interest yen loan package to China. The loan packages were initiated in fiscal 1996 on a five-year schedule and will amount overall to 580 billion yen for environment protection and economic modernization.

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