TOKYO – Japan was ready to work together with China on its ambitious project, the New Silk Road, to revive the old trade corridor between Asia and Europe, which also incorporates Latin American countries, Japanese news agency Kyodo reported on Monday.
“Our strategy is to achieve stability and prosperity of international society by coordinating with countries in the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean,” a source from the government told Kyodo.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to promote cooperation in the development of China’s “One Belt, One Road” cross-border infrastructure initiative, which represents a change in the diplomatic policy he has pursued so far.
In May, Japan expressed its intention to help other Asian countries to boost development without specifying whether it would be in the context of the New Silk Road.
The Japanese government now plans, through companies in both countries, to support the development of infrastructure and commercial activity in the region, the same sources said.
The New Silk Road is a vast project led by China since 2013 to improve connectivity between Asia and Europe with infrastructure and telecommunications and also has the support of Latin American countries such as Uruguay.
In early November, Abe had expressed that he expected good cooperation with China regarding initiatives which fell in line with Japan’s strategy of achieving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
Abe considers it an imperative issue to improve Japan’s relationship with China, given the ever growing presence of the Asian giant in global economy and security matters.