BEIJING, March 12 (Xinhua) -- China and Japan opened the "year of cultural and sports exchanges" activities here Monday to mark the 35th anniversary of the normalization of China-Japan diplomatic relations.
The Japanese side will organize a series of activities in China during the following week, including a "super live in Beijing" vocal concert involving Chinese and Japanese pop music stars, a Japanese film festival, and a Japanese band's tour show and a Japanese drama around China.
Activities organized by the Chinese side in Japan will start in mid-April in Tokyo.
At a reception held by the Japanese embassy in Beijing, Asano Katsuhito, Japan's senior vice-minister of foreign affairs, said Japan hopes to introduce itself to the Chinese people through these activities, in a bid to strengthen mutual understanding.
Meng Xiaosi, vice-minister of culture of China, said the Chinese side attaches great importance to the activities and will hold nearly a hundred activities.
The year of cultural and sports exchanges between China and Japan will positively contribute to the communication and friendship of the two peoples, she said.
The logo of the activities was issued at the reception. The logo is formed by two letters "C" and "J", the two initial letters of China and Japan. The two letters form a heart-like picture, well matching the theme slogan "expectation of heart, a new future".
Some 200 Chinese and Japanese people from all walks of life attended the Beijing reception.
China and Japan have taken many actions to further improve their ever-frozen ties since Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo's visit to China last October, and the "year of cultural and sports exchanges" was set by Chinese and Japanese leaders during Abe's visit.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao is scheduled to visit Japan in April.