Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi have reaffirmed the need to develop bilateral relations and also work closely together for the Group of 20 summit in Osaka in June. Chinese President Xi Jinping is to attend the summit.
At talks in Beijing on Monday, Wang said the two countries need to further advance the prospects for developing ties. He expressed hope about taking relations to the next level.
Kono said the two countries have a responsibility toward peace and stability in the region and the rest of the world.
Wang and Kono agreed to promote young people's exchanges through school trips and other means.
The two countries agreed in 2008 on joint development of natural gas fields that straddle the median line between the two countries in the East China Sea. Joint development has never started, but Japan determined last month that China had deployed a drilling vessel on its side of the line.
Kono conveyed Japan's concern and urged China to implement the agreement.
On North Korea, Kono asked China to take steps to prevent offshore ship-to-ship transfers of goods that violate UN Security Council sanctions.
He argued that implementing the UN resolutions is needed to achieve North Korea's denuclearization.
Kono called for China's cooperation in resolving the issue of the abduction of Japanese nationals by North Korea. Wang replied that he understands Japan's position.
Kono also made a new request that China lift import restrictions on some Japanese food products imposed after the 2011 nuclear accident.