TORONTO, Canada, June 27 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Hu Jintao met new Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan in Canada's largest city of Toronto on Sunday to discuss bilateral ties.
This is the first meeting between Hu and Kan since Kan became Japanese prime minister early this month.
In a telephone conversation with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao last month, Kan said the Japanese government and he himself attached great importance to the deepening of Japan-China strategic and mutually beneficial relations.
He and his government were willing to keep high-level exchanges with the Chinese side, carry out the consensus reached between the two sides, strengthen communication and coordination on major international and regional issues, and push for new development of bilateral cooperation in various fields, said Kan.
China-Japan relations remain one of the most important bilateral relations to both China and Japan. Bilateral relations have achieved major progress in various fields and benefited the two sides significantly since the normalization of diplomatic ties 38 years ago.
In recent years, "ice-breaking," "ice-melting," "spring-heralding" and "warm-spring" visits paid by leaders of the two countries have helped improve bilateral relations continuously.
China is Japan's largest trading partner, its biggest export market and the primary choice of outbound investment, while Japan is China's third largest trading partner and second biggest source of foreign investment.
The two countries have established 245 pairs of sister cities. Last year 4.87 million of their nationals traveled between the two countries. China and Japan also keep sound communication and coordination on both international and regional issues.
Hu and Kan met on the sidelines of a summit of the Group of 20, which is aimed at securing a global economic recovery and addressing economic challenges and risks.