Japan to give $ 410 mln in final loans to China

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TOKYO, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Japan will stop giving fresh aid to China after extending 46.3 billion yen (0 million) in loans to Beijing in the current fiscal year ending next March, Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura said on Thursday.

Japan and China had agreed that Tokyo would end fresh aid to its giant neighbour by the time of the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

''These are the final yen loans for China,'' Komura told reporters.

Japan had extended 62.3 billion yen to China in loans in the year to March 2007, Komura said.

Japan has been reducing its official development aid to China from a peak in 2000/01 in view of its fast-developing economy.

Concern about China's double-digit growth in defence spending has been one of the factors behind Tokyo's move to cut and finally end its economic aid for Beijing.

Komura held talks with visiting U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates earlier on Thursday and discussed China's military buildup.

Komura said he shared the view with Gates that Tokyo and Washington should continue to urge China to be ''transparent'' about its military strength.

REUTERS AK DS1432

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