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China's top envoy Wang Yi arrived in Japan yesterday for the first visit by a Chinese foreign minister to Tokyo in more than eight years, amid improving ties.

Chinese Foreign Minister was due in Tokyo Sunday for a visit seen as a sign of a gradual thaw between the Asian rivals, amid flurries of diplomacy over. The event will discuss The Future of Banking - Evolution, Revolution Or Big Bang by bringing together regulators, banks and disrupters, as digitalisation and innovative business models are affecting the environment in which financial institutions operate.

They also touched base on the upcoming three-way summit with South Korea, set to take place next month.

The two sides reportedly agreed to continue to fully implement all relevant United Nations resolutions and to work together closely in order to realize the dismantlement of the North's nuclear weapons and missiles. The neighbours remain at odds, however, over China's growing military presence in the South China Sea, through which much of the region's sea-borne trade sails, and a dispute over ownership of uninhabited islets in the East China Sea, known as the Senkaku in Tokyo and the Diaoyu in Beijing.

"I would like to regard (Mr Wang's visit) as a major step forward in our efforts towards improving Japan-China relations", Mr Kono said at the start of their meeting.

"We are also faced with some complex and sensitive elements", said Wang, a former ambassador to Tokyo.

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China showed its influence over its reclusive ally when President Xi Jinping hosted North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his wife in Beijing last month. Now, China has an added incentive to fix ties with Japan, after a series of surprises from Trump on North Korea, Taiwan and trade sanctions.

The ministers agreed to strive for the early implementation of a "Maritime and Aerial Communication Mechanism" to prevent unintended collisions in the area.

"We agreed the importance of making it a sea of peace, cooperation and friendship", he said.

Kono met Wang in Beijing in January.

Wang, who will be in Tokyo until Tuesday, will also participate in the fourth China-Japan High-level Economic Dialogue. Successful visits by Wang and Li would provide positive publicity at a crucial time for Abe, whose chances of winning a ruling party leadership election in September have been damaged by a series of allegations of cronyism and government cover-ups. According to Japanese officials, the dialogue is the first in almost eight years.

Wang on Monday holds high-level talks with Kono and other Japanese Cabinet ministers.

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