China is greatly concerned about Japan's decision to lift a ban of nearly half a century on weapons exports, Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said Tuesday.
The Japanese cabinet on Tuesday officially approved new principles on arms exports to replace the old ones, which were enacted in 1967 and virtually ruled out arms exports.
The new principles allow Japan to export weapons under certain circumstances and pave the way for the country to acquire more advanced weapons and military technologies through joint development with its allies.
Analysts say that the relaxation of weapons exports is part of the Abe administration's move to gut Japan's pacifist constitution and build on its military capacities both at home and internationally.
Hong said at a daily briefing that Japan's policy changes in military and security areas have a direct bearing on the security environment and strategic stability of the region, as well as on the direction of Japan's future development.
"We hope the Japanese side can draw profound lessons from history and pay attention to the security concerns of its Asian neighbors," he said.
The spokesman expressed hope that Japan can respond to the call of the times, pursue a path of peaceful development and do more things that are conducive to regional peace and stability.