[Concurrent] Harajo, Special Adviser to the Cabinet of the Former Prime Minister of Japan

  Both China and Japan are very important countries in Asia.

We are in the same region, so we should enhance mutual understanding and cooperation.

We have to be friendly, we shouldn't be confrontational.

We have to think about how we can work together and it can be difficult, but we should rise to the challenge and we should continue to stay in that direction.

  [Explanation] September 29 is the 50th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between China and Japan.

On September 29, 1972, the governments of China and Japan issued the Sino-Japanese Joint Statement, which opened a new chapter in the relations between the two countries.

Recently, in an exclusive interview with a reporter from China News Agency in Hong Kong, Mr. Hara, a special adviser to the cabinet of the former Prime Minister of Japan and a well-known entrepreneur, said that China and Japan occupy important positions in Asia and even the world. The past half century has witnessed the continuous development of Sino-Japanese relations.

He expounded the positive role of people-to-people diplomacy in Sino-Japanese exchanges with personal experience.

  [Concurrent] Harajo, Special Adviser to the Cabinet of the Former Prime Minister of Japan

  My father and I created a Harrah Research Foundation in 1990.

At that time, many young Chinese college students, graduate students and assistant professors came to Japan for further study.

But the Japanese government system at the time had no way to offer scholarships to foreign students.

So we decided to prepare some research funds for Chinese students in Japan.

I think this is a good example of the (people-to-people) exchange association between the two countries.

So we have supported a lot of people, some of whom have become leaders in China's technology field.

  [Explanation] Behind the friendly exchanges, lies the profound cultural origins of the two countries.

Yuan Zhangren said that China and Japan are geographically close and culturally connected. The exchanges and exchanges for more than 2,000 years have jointly formed a rich and diverse East Asian civilization.

  [Concurrent] Harajo, Special Adviser to the Cabinet of the Former Prime Minister of Japan

  Many Chinese characters were brought to Japan during the Sui and Tang Dynasties in the 7th and 8th centuries AD and developed in Japan.

Especially after 1867, the Japanese started to translate a lot of English, German and French into Japanese through Chinese characters, so we created a lot of Japanese-made Chinese, some of which were adopted by the Chinese people since then.

I hope we can establish more cultural exchanges and develop our respective cultures in Asia.

  [Explanation] On January 1, 2022, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which was initiated by ASEAN and participated by 15 countries including China, Japan, and South Korea, came into effect. The free trade zone with development potential has officially landed.

In the view of Mr. Yuan, who has been engaged in the global financial investment industry for many years, economic and trade exchanges have always been an important booster of bilateral relations, and the pragmatic cooperation between China and Japan will also bring common benefits to other member states.

  [Concurrent] Harajo, Special Adviser to the Cabinet of the Former Prime Minister of Japan

  At present, the world's largest free trade agreement is RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership). RCEP consists of 15 countries, and its total size is similar to that of the European Union and TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership). China and Japan are the leading countries in the agreement.

So I think in RCEP, if China and Japan can make ground rules to boost the economy, that will bring prosperity to every RCEP member.

  [Commentary] In 1961, the 9-year-old Yuan Zhangren came to Hong Kong for the first time with his father.

Now, 60 years later, the Japanese scholar has witnessed the rapid development of the city, and has long regarded it as his "second hometown".

He understands Hong Kong's inherent unique advantages and the important role it will play in the increasingly frequent international cooperation in the future.

  [Concurrent] Harajo, Special Adviser to the Cabinet of the Former Prime Minister of Japan

  Hong Kong is a part of China, and Hong Kong is also closely linked to Western society, and implements "one country, two systems".

Geographically, Hong Kong is almost the central point of the RCEP member economies.

So I think the [opportunities] created by Hong Kong will play a very important role, by connecting all the member states, bringing them here, discussing and finding solutions, how to play the uniqueness of Hong Kong.

I think technological innovation is one of the ways.

This can be done through Hong Kong's own efforts or through cooperation between Hong Kong and Japan.

This enables us to introduce many technologies from Japan, create a new technology application center in Hong Kong, and contribute to the entire Asian society.

  [Explanation] Committed to promoting practical exchanges and cooperation between China and Japan for a long time, this Japanese scholar in Hong Kong is full of confidence in the future of Sino-Japanese relations, and is also full of expectations for Hong Kong's important role in international exchanges.

  Reporter Fan Siyi and Luo Siyu report from Hong Kong

Responsible editor: [Fang Jialiang]