Amid strained ties, Chinese Premier Li Qiang has said Japan’s export controls over equipment related to semiconductors could “disrupt” the global economy.
Li expressed his concern on Wednesday during a meeting with a big Japanese delegation, including politicians and business representatives, that is on an official trip to China.
Pointing to “politicization” of economic matters, Li told Japan’s 80-member delegation led by former parliament speaker Yohei Kono that Japan’s decision to tighten export controls on at least 23 types of equipment used in making semiconductors “could disrupt the global economy.”
Tokyo’s new export control restrictions will take effect later this month.
According to Tokyo-based Kyodo News, the Chinese premier “expressed concern” over such measures.
“China’s development will benefit countries, including Japan, and not become a risk,” Li said, according to details shared with media by a Kono’s aide.
Kono urged Beijing not to take any step that could “dampen our appetite for investment.”
This is the first such large group of Japanese that has visited China since 2019. The meeting lasted for around 70 minutes.
“In my daily exchanges with my Japanese friends, everyone holds a common view that China and Japan must get along with and support each other so as to achieve greater win-win results in cooperation,” Li told the Japanese delegation.
Kono, however, expressed Japan’s “worries” to Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao on Tuesday about Beijing’s revised counterespionage law.
The delegation also sought the restoration of direct flights between southern Japan and China besides simplified visa procedures to boost bilateral relations.
Relations between Tokyo and Beijing are tense as China’s economic and military influence in the Asia-Pacific region grows, while Japan has joined the US-led Quad – a loose security alliance aimed at countering Beijing’s influence.
In March this year, China detained a Japanese national in his 50s, a pharmaceutical employee, who “seems to have violated the spy act,” according to Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno.