MIYAGI, Japan - China is ready to extend more material and economic support to Japan in its disaster relief task, and will consider more import from the country recently affected by a nuclear crisis, said Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.
In an impending effort, China will soon send two business groups to Japan for opportunities in cooperation in the disaster relief and reconstruction sector as well as investment to Japan.
Wen made the remarks while making his first stop in inspecting Natori City in Miyagi Prefecture at Saturday noon after landing in the Sendai Airport just 15 minutes ago.
The county was the most severely jolted in the March earthquake and tsunami, with its buildings flattened and destroyed vehicles piled up along the main roads of the city.
Wen paid tribute to the more than 10,000 lives lost in the disaster in the area and wishes "better life for those alive".
"Disasters can destroy the homelands, but they can no way destroy the wills of the people," said Wen.
"I firmly believe that the Japanese people can rebuild their homelands through their own efforts and supports from the international society," said Wen.
Answering questions from Japanese reporters, Wen said that China is ready to extend more material and other kinds of support for Japan's disaster-relief task.
On the concerns of the Japanese business, Wen said China is ready to restore and expand the tourism between China and Japan, and to import more agriculture and other produces from Japan under the pretext of safety.
In a more concrete move, China will soon send two business groups to Japan for opportunities in cooperation in the disaster relief and reconstruction sector as well as investment to Japan.
Wen also pledged to enhance joint research and cooperation in disaster prevention, earthquake and tsunami monitoring, nuclear safety and new energy development.
China has offered in-time support for Japan's disaster relief.
Wen said he brought to Japan during the current visit about 61 million RMB donated by Chinese people to the Chinese Red Cross for the Japanese people.
"A friendship in need is more previous. I hope the friendship forged between Chinese and Japanese people through joint effort in disaster relief will be long lasting and solid," said Wen.
Wen arrived in Japan Saturday for the 4th trilateral leadership meeting among China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK).
Wen will visit Fukushima later Saturday afternoon, where the March 11 earthquake and tsunami crippled the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
Fukushima is still struggling to control nuclear radiation.
Chinese foreign Ministry said earlier that the visit to Fukushima is a personal choice of Premier Wen, to show China's support for the nation's reconstruction efforts.
Wen will hold a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan on Sunday morning. It will be the first formal meeting between the leaders of China and Japan since their tie worsened last year after Japan's coast guard arrested the captain of a Chinese fishing trawler whose boat had collided with Japanese patrol ships near the Diaoyu Islands in East China Sea.
Observers said the visit is an important step in improving China-Japan relations.