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Chinese scholar suggests axis with India, Japan

May 19, 2004 14:27 IST
Last Updated: May 19, 2004 14:30 IST

China, India and Japan, the  three most influential economic and military powers in Asia  should forge a trilateral strategic cooperation and resist  uniting with a "non-Asian superpower" to contain and encompass  another, a Chinese scholar said today.

The three Asian giants, if determined to strengthen  trilateral strategic cooperation and coordination, will not  only greatly promote their self-development but contribute to  the boom of Asia, Feng Zhaokui, a researcher with the  Institute of Japanese studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences wrote in an article.

"None of the three countries should hold the idea of  uniting with one party to contain another or uniting with a  non-Asian superpower to contain and encompass another," Feng wrote in the official China Daily  today, triggering an intense debate on the viability of a new  Asian axis.

He stressed that it is reasonable that China, Japan, and India attach importance to developing good relations with  Washington, but they should not underestimate their trilateral  relationship.

"Any party should not subordinate itself to acting as  a chessman for a non-Asian superpower to contain others. For  example, Tokyo should not target its military alliance with  Washington against Beijing," Feng said.

Noting that China and India are both countries with an ancient civilization, Feng said Beijing and New Delhi should,  together with Tokyo, mutually strengthen the bond by  glorifying oriental civilisation.

The trilateral political ties between China, Japan and  India are generally smooth despite the kind of problems and  friction that exists in every bilateral relationship.

"But those problems and frictions exactly underline  why the three countries should develop a common trilateral  co-operative platform to improve bilateral relationships,"  Feng said.

Recalling that former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru  said as early as in 1937 that the problems facing India and  China are global problems as well, the Chinese researcher said  that Nehru's words are still applicable to current China,  Japan and India. "They badly need mutual understanding and trust given  that many future problems should be commonly decided by the  three countries," Feng said.

To safeguard maritime transportation will become an  outstanding part for the trilateral strategic cooperation  between the three countries.  Further, the three countries should also join hands to deal with such emerging non-traditional threats as terrorism  and piracy.

Feng noted that China, Japan and India each have a  population of over 100 million, and last year their respective  Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was 1.4 trillion US dollars, 4.3  trillion US dollars, and 500 billion US dollars. The Chinese researcher also pointed out that compared  to others, the three nations enjoy more obvious geographic  advantages in pursuing and strengthening economic exchanges.

"There is an enormous potential for China, Japan and  India to carry out economic cooperation. Japan's plentiful  financial and technological resources can be a great advantage for the development of China and India," Feng said.

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