By Yoon Sojung
Leaders from Korea, Japan and China on Dec. 24 reconfirmed the significance of their trilateral cooperation over the past 20 years and adopted a new vision for such collaboration over the next decade.
Speaking at a joint media conference after a trilateral summit with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the Chinese city of Chengdu, President Moon Jae-in said, "Today, we three countries adopted a trilateral cooperation vision for the next decade.”
"The newly adopted vision will serve as a milestone for the path of peace and prosperity in East Asia and a sustainable world."
"We reconfirmed the importance of the trilateral cooperation we have developed over the past two decades and decided to raise the level of tangible cooperation so that the people of our countries can feel the results."
President Moon also said this year's summit offered an important opportunity to help make the trilateral cooperation meeting a regular event. The three leaders agreed to boost cooperation in sectors directly related to the people's happiness and quality of life in all three countries, he added.
The three sides also agreed to continue close communication and cooperation for the denuclearization of and a permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.
Premier Li said, "Not only through cooperation among China, Korea and Japan but also that in East Asia, we will strengthen communication and coordination in responding to regional and global issues erupting in the Asia-Pacific region."
"We will play a greater role in forming a cooperative structure in East Asia that meet the demands of countries in the region," he said, adding, "We all support free trade, economic cooperation and investment."
The premier also said the three countries will accelerate negotiations on a trilateral free trade agreement (FTA).
Prime Minister Abe said the three leaders confirmed their commitment to pursue a trilateral FTA, saying it has vast added value and can even become the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.
"For us to meet global expectations of our three countries and assume greater responsibility, duties and obligations, we three leaders renewed our commitment to work harder toward trilateral cooperation, which marks its 20th anniversary this year, for the next ten years."