China and Japan failed again to reach an agreement over an undersea natural gas field, although Beijing and Tokyo said that they were trying to improve relations. From Reuters:
About a dozen rounds of official-level talks between the energy-hungry Asian giants have failed to reach a compromise on use of natural gas in parts of the East China Sea over which both sides claim economic rights.
Beijing has said it hoped to settle the dispute ahead of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s visit to Tokyo in the spring. It would be the first by a Chinese head of state to Japan in 10 years