Japan, China open ‘Green Expo’ for sustainable growth

BEIJING (Kyodo) — Japan and China opened a three-day event Wednesday in Beijing aimed at promoting environmental technology and new energy solutions, two areas vital for ensuring sustainability of robust growth in China and other Asian economies.

The Japan-China Green Expo 2011 at the China National Convention Center brings together 62 Japanese and 23 Chinese companies, including Toshiba Corp., Hitachi Ltd., JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corp., Sony Corp., Asahi Kasei Corp., BYD Auto Co. and Chery Automobile Co.

Hiromasa Yonekura, chairman of the Japan Business Federation, or Nippon Keidanren, said at the opening ceremony that Japan’s businesses believe the country must actively promote exchanges with other countries, especially to overcome the devastation caused by the March earthquake and tsunami and the subsequent nuclear crisis.

“In this respect, we expect the Japan-China Green Expo to be a meaningful event,” Yonekura said, calling for closer public-private sector cooperation in the energy saving and new energy fields.

Wan Jifei, chairman of the China Council for Promotion of International Trade, said China hopes the two countries will “cultivate a new market and build ‘win-win’ relations” in the areas.

Representing the Japanese government, Makiko Tanaka, parliamentary vice foreign minister, thanked China for extending support to Japan in the wake of the March calamity, and said Tokyo is making its “best efforts” to bring continued radioactivity leaks from a nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture under control.

Kikuta said Japan will keep updating China and other countries about the plant “timely and accurately.”

At the expo, participating companies are showcasing a so-called “smart grid” next-generation power distribution system, energy-saving technology, environmentally friendly urban development and other technology for green growth, according to the organizers.

Company executives and government officials will take part in seminars on finance, highly efficient power generation, and water businesses, among other areas. There are also business matching sessions for participating companies and visitors.

In its five-year development plan from 2011 to 2015, the Chinese government calls for stable economic growth with an emphasis on higher energy efficiency and environmentally friendly development. It vows to actively employ foreign technology to achieve the goal.

According to Chinese figures, investment in the country’s environment industry is expected to total 3 trillion yuan, or about 37 trillion yen, in the five-year period.

China has overtaken the United States as the world’s biggest emitter of carbon dioxide, the chief greenhouse gas blamed for the bulk of global warming. Last year, the country also overtook Japan as the world’s second-largest economy.

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