(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) China's major banks confirmed on Monday that they will not attend the International Monetary Fund (IMF)-World Bank meeting that opens Tuesday in Tokyo, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.
The banks include the country's four state-owned banks -- the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Agriculture Bank of China.
The banks' decision was made after bilateral relations between China and Japan became strained, after the Japanese government last month announced its decision to "purchase" the disputed islands in the East China, which are claimed by China and Taiwan, Xinhua quoted analysts as saying.
Japan's move fueled anti-Japan protests in dozens of Chinese cities last month and has taken its toll on bilateral trade and economic ties.
"The banks' decision is further evidence that the unilateral actions by Japan is freezing bilateral relations and now starting to weigh on the world's economy," said Mei Xinyu, a researcher at the International Trade and Economic Cooperation Institution under China's Ministry of Commerce.
"The ties between the world's second- and third-largest economies will definitely undermine the global economic operation and policy coordination. This is because the two nations together make up about one fifth of the world's economic output," Mei noted.
In an interview with Japanese news organizations on Oct. 2, IMF chief Christine Lagarde prodded Japan and China to ease tensions over the territorial dispute, saying the shaky world economy needs the two Asian economic giants to support sustainable growth, Kyodo News Agency has reported earlier from Washington.
"Both China and Japan are key economic drivers that do not want to be distracted by territorial division," Lagarde said ahead of the annual meetings, stressing that the current status of the economy and the global economy needs the two countries fully engaged.