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Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said Monday his nation’s economic development will pose no threat to Japan or other countries, noting that Beijing’s growth is mutually beneficial for Japan and China.

“We will stand firm in pursuing our development in a peaceful manner. . . . We will not pose a threat to any country,” Wen said to an audience of about 130 people at a luncheon in Tokyo hosted by the Japan Business Federation (Nippon Keidanren), Japan’s most influential business lobby.

Wen said in Chinese, speaking through a Japanese interpreter, that Japan-China trade relations are such that China’s economic development is a “merit” to Japan, and bearing that in mind, said the two countries should continue pursuing a strategic partnership in economic, cultural and other aspects.

In his opening address, Keidanren Chairman Hiromasa Yonekura stressed the role of China in Japan’s business.

“China was among the first to be off the hook from the global economic crisis and return to a path of growth,” Yonekura said.

“With China shifting fast from being the world’s factory to the world’s market, our country’s business community now can no longer speak of business without China, which has been showing remarkable development,” the new Keidanren chief said.

Wen said China is succeeding thanks to its economic stimulus steps that included large-scale government spending, and its economy has emerged resilient in the face of the global economic crisis.

What is important, Wen said, is for China’s economy to focus more on domestic than foreign demand.

In relation to Japanese and other foreign firms coming to China, Wen said China welcomes foreign firms’ entry, and offered his assurance they will receive the same treatment as Chinese firms.

Wen also voiced hope of enhancing ties with Japanese business circles in the area of environmentally friendly technologies, where Japanese firms are strong.

While there are views that the global economy has recovered, Wen said it is still “premature” to come to such a conclusion in the wake of such uncertainties as Europe’s fiscal health and high unemployment in the United States.

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