China's President Xi Jinping and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who met for the first time as leaders in 2014,…
China’s President Xi Jinping and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who met for the first time as leaders in 2014, shook their hands, looked downward, expressing cruel.
Both men seemed determined to avoid enjoying the meeting at a Beijing forum.
Four years later, Abe will get a far hotter response when he comes to Beijing on Thursday for his first official visit to China this year.
And it is largely thanks to US President Donald Trump.
Trump administration’s unconventional foreign policy against trade and military alliances has left Tokyo uncertain of United States support that has underlined its international relations since the end of World War II.
The president has repeatedly urged military allies in eastern Asia to pay for their own defense and end the end of an American military presence in the region while Japan is invited to buy more American weapons.
Over the East China Sea, Beijing is increasingly under pressure from the Trump administration and in the desperate need for diplomatic and economic allies in the region.
“Both Japan and China are aimed at the United States,” said Koichi Nakano, professor of political science at Tokyo Sophia University, CNN. “Xi Jinping wants to say to Abe that they are together together.”
Beijing and Tokyo have historically had very different relationships with Washington ̵
1; one border opposition, the other one close alliance – but both countries are facing similar complaints from the Trump administration.
Trumps disputes with China are well-known, given the evolving consequences for the global economy and diplomatic arena.
Billions of dollars in Chinese goods have been the Trump administration stuck with customs, while US authorities accuse China of widespread theft of intellectual property rights.
In recent months, the dispute has spread beyond economic problems in military and political matters, with Trump’s insufficient claims that Beijing disturbed US elections.
But for Japan, the conflict is more complicated and unexpected. The United States has been a close military and diplomatic ally in Tokyo for over 70 years.
Abe was the first international leader to meet Trump after the presidential election in 2016.
Despite several meetings and a concerted response to the court US President, the Japanese government has been left empty-handed.
“All fantasy and Shinzo-Donald cases have not really led to any special treatment for Japan, but quite often rude and hostile attitude when it comes to trade issues,” told CNC Koichi.
Diplomatically, Abe was excluded from the cold during high-profile negotiations with North Korea during this year’s conversation between Pyongyang, Washington and Seoul, a snub who felt deep in Tokyo
Unlike other American allies like Australia, Japan was not freed from Trumps tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum, while the US president has also talked hard about trade with Japan.
“Trump’s political awareness of trade is straight in the 1980s, with Japan. If you are looking for consistency, he believes that Japan and South Korea do not play fair trade and he firmly believes that,” said Richard McGregor, Senior Vice President at the Sydney Lowy Institute, CNN.
Although the United States hostility pushes Beijing and Tokyo closer, the two countries’ long and bursting history makes a simple and permanent approaching difficulty.
Relationships have been rocky since the end of World War II among recriminations over Japan’s brutal occupation of parts of China.
Progress towards “normalizing” relationships was founded in 2012 when a long simmering feast over a barren set of islands demanded by both China and Japan was boiled over in public protests and threatening disputes.
The dispute about who owned the Diaoyu Islands, known as Senkakus in Japan, led to a rapid chilling of diplomatic relations culminating in the chilly meeting between Abe and Xi 2014.
At the same time, the culture has waged war against Japan’s occupation in China, with Beijing who politics the wars, while nationalists in Tokyo claim that the country should reclaim its national pride.
The unlikely warming of relations between the two The countries began in September 2017 when Abe became the first Japanese leader of 15 years to attend the Chinese Embassy’s national party.
Since then, Abe and Xi have met several times at international summits, where each country promises the efforts of others to improve relations. In May, Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang became the highest profile of Chinese leader to meet Japan’s emperor Akihito for almost a decade.
Experts say that Trump drives both countries on trade and security issues, China and Japan are desperate to smooth the regional relations they seek allies to help them weather the American storm.
“China is looking for a friend so it means that they are much more willing to accept Japan and ignore their strict strategic differences. The same applies to Japan, in some sense
Japan needs Japan to push back Trump’s trade measures. Japan is desperate to protect the current liberal economic regime in the region, Stephen Nagy, visiting colleague at the Japanese Institute of International Affairs, told CNN.
“Their concern is if relations continue to deteriorate, there will be an American market and a (separate, closed) Chinese market … which will go to the cost of business by Japanese companies, “he said.” They do not want this to happen. “
At present, both countries seem enthusiastic to promote free trade, at least in public. In an interview with South China Morning Post in the run-up to Abe in Beijing, it considered ki Nesian ambassador to Japan, Cheng Yonghua, the countries “high-cost” economies.
“We should not be idiotic and indifferent to the damage to global trade and the global supply chain,” he said. “We should agree to express our firm support for free trade and resistance to protectionism.”