Addressing the G-7 nations meeting at Tokyo on February 9, Chinese Finance Minister Xie Xuren appealed to the world’s top industrialized nations to implement effective measures and take the responsibility of maintaining world economic stability1. Meanwhile, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson stated that President Hu Jintao would in all likelihood visit Japan next year. Though the dates and the nature of the visit were yet to be fixed, this would be the first visit by a Chinese president in a decade2.
On the occasion of the Chinese lunar New Year, Premier Wen Jiabao visited former Cambodian King Norodom Sihanouk and praised him for his outstanding contribution in promoting China-Cambodia friendship. The meeting assumed significance in the backdrop of celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. Wen also thanked Sihanouk for disaster relief assistance in snow-stricken areas of China3.
In other developments, the Chinese government opened two major cross-strait direct sea routes between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan - the Xiamen-Jinmen and Mawei-Matsu routes4.