National / Politics

China's Xi to make three-day visit to Japan from Thursday for Osaka G20 summit

Kyodo

Chinese President Xi Jinping will make a three-day visit to Japan from Thursday to attend the Group of 20 summit of leading economies in Osaka, the state-run Xinhua News Agency said Sunday.

The Chinese news agency quoted the schedule announcement made by a Foreign Ministry spokesman, but without providing other details. It would be Xi’s first trip to Japan since he came to power in 2013.

Much attention is focused on whether there will be a breakthrough in Beijing’s trade tensions with Washington when Xi holds talks with U.S. President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the two-day G20 summit.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Xi are expected to hold a bilateral meeting Thursday in Osaka, a day before the start of the G20 summit. The countries are also coordinating to organize a dinner meeting for the two leaders on that day, government officials said.

While seeking to further improve bilateral ties, which for several years had severely deteriorated over territorial and historical issues, Japan and China are hoping to organize a visit by Xi to Tokyo as a state guest next spring.

The last visit to Japan by a Chinese head of state was conducted by Hu Jintao in November 2010. He attended a meeting of leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Yokohama.

Xi last visited Japan in 2009, when he was vice president of China.

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