Beijing:  Foreign Ministers of China, Japan and South Korea have met to discuss among other issues, the tensions generated by the planned satellite of North Korea and chart a future course of action on cooperation between the three nations.

The two-day meeting in the Chinese city of Ningbo is taking place amid concerns over North Korea's announcement to launch a satellite April 12 and 16 to commemorate the centenary of its leader, Kim Il Sung.

Japan has threatened to shoot down the rocket carrying the payload and deployed intercepting missiles at key locations. China for its part has been appealing to all parties not to precipitate matters but there was no indication here whether Beijing has advised Pyongyang to put off the planned launch, which was announced days after US has agreed to resume food supplied to North Korea.

Washington subsequently putts off the decision. The Chinese Foreign Ministry said the meeting focused on trilateral cooperation. Yang, deputy director-general of the Chinese Foreign Ministry's Department of Asian Affairs, said the foreign ministers will exchange views on developments and the future direction of cooperation between the three nations.

They will also make preparations for the fifth trilateral meeting among the leaders of China, Japan and the South Korea.
"There are not only a good basis but also vast potential in pragmatic cooperation among China, Japan and the ROK, (South Korea)" said Yang, adding that the three nations have made positive progress since 1999 in their cooperation, featuring leaders' meetings and various mechanisms.
The three countries will further facilitate the liberalisation of trade and investment, and they will promote pragmatic cooperation in fields including finance, energy and technology, Yang said.