|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on October 22, 2015|
Q: The Japanese side protested the other day that the Chinese side violated relevant agreements on oil and gas field exploration in the East China Sea reached between the two sides in June 2008, and unilaterally conducted exploration activities. What is your response to that? Will China and Japan hold high-level consultations on maritime affairs in the near future? Will they launch the maritime and air liaison mechanism between the defense ministries of the two sides?
A: China's oil and gas exploration activities in the East China Sea are all carried out in undisputed waters under China's jurisdiction. There is no such a thing as unilateral exploration. It is hoped that the Japanese side can correctly understand the principled consensus on the issue of the East China Sea and stop raising unreasonable demands.
China-Japan high-level consultations on maritime affairs is a full-spectrum mechanism for communication and coordination on maritime affairs. Under this mechanism, the two sides are communicating on various issues concerning the East China Sea including defense, law enforcement, oil and gas, scientific research and fishery. During the 3rd round of China-Japan high-level consultations on maritime affairs held in January this year, the two sides agreed in principle to hold the 4th round of consultations in the latter half of the year in China. The two sides are consulting with each other on the time and place and other specific matters.
To set up the maritime and air liaison mechanism between the Chinese and Japanese defense ministries is an agreement reached between the leaders of the two sides, which will be conducive to enhancing crisis management in and above the East China Sea, avoiding misunderstanding and miscalculation, and safeguarding peace and stability in the East China Sea. The Chinese side stands ready to move forward communication on the relevant issue with the Japanese side on the basis of the four-point principled agreement reached between the two sides last year.
Q: During President Xi Jinping's visit, the UK government proposed to issue 10-year valid visas to Chinese tourists. Does the Chinese side plan to issue long-term multiple-entry visas to British tourists?
A: The Chinese side welcomes all the measures taken by other countries including the UK to facilitate personnel exchanges with China, and is willing to maintain close communication and cooperation on this with various countries following the principle of equality and reciprocity.
Q: It is reported that during the 2nd China-Japan high-level political dialogue held the other day, the Japanese side proposed to resume the exchange of visits between the two leaders next year. Can you confirm that?
A: The Chinese side has released relevant information about the 2nd China-Japan high-level political dialogue. Relevant report is untrue.