Japanese PM Fukuda to visit China

2007-12-20 23:38:55 Xinhua English

Newly-elected President of the Liberal Democratic Party Yasuo Fukuda smiles as he sits in the presidential seat at the party headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, Sept. 23, 2007. Japan's ruling party on Sunday picked Fukuda, an advocate of warmer ties with Asian neighbours, to be the next prime minister. (AFP Photo)

BEIJING, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang announced Friday that Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda will pay an official visit to China from Dec. 27 to 30.

This is Fukuda's first visit to China since he took office in September.

The Chinese foreign ministry didn't immediately disclose details of Fukuda's visit, but reports say the trip may include talks with Chinese leaders, a lecture at the prestigious Peking University, and visits to a new coastal development zone in Tianjin and the tomb of Confucius in Qufu of east China's Shandon province.

China and Japan have seen their relations improved since ice-thawing trips by former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to China last October, and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in April this year to Japan.

Fukuda's visit will be the climax of series of high-profile bilateral exchanges this year, including a landmark visit to Japan by a Chinese navy ship, and the first China-Japan high-level economic dialogue, acclaimed by both parties as "very fruitful".

Chinese President Hu Jintao is expected to visit Japan next year.