Economic growth and development are not the only evidence of fast-growing influence of Asian countries on the international scene. Recent diplomatic and political developments have shown that, beyond usual tensions between China on the one hand and the United States and its allies on the other hand, these countries are also working toward building a safer and more prosperous region. Leaders of the ROK, Japan and China issued a joint declaration for peace and cooperation in northeast Asia on the occasion of the 6th trilateral summit.
“We will further strengthen economic and trade relations and deepen the convergence of interests,” art. 8 of the declaration said. After a 3-1/2-year spat, Japan and the ROK also held a bilateral summit for the 1st time ever in Seoul, reaffirming their commitment to resolving sensitive issues like sexual slavery victims drafted by Japan’s Imperial Army during WWII. Unseen since 1949, a meeting in Singapore between Chinese and Taiwanese leaders across the Taiwan Strait is “significant” and bores “positive meaning” for long-term development of cross-Strait relations, a Chinese official said.