BEIJING   -   Remembering history, China and Japan should grasp new opportunities in developing bilateral relations in line with the requirements of the new era, experts on international relations have said.

Sunday marks the 82nd anniversary of the Lugou Bridge Incident, in which the Japanese troops attacked the Chinese forces at Beijing’s Lugou Bridge, also known as Marco Polo Bridge, and started its full-scale invasion of China.

The Chinese people’s war of resistance against Japanese aggression lasted until Japan’s unconditional surrender in 1945.

To commemorate the anniversary, over 500 people including veterans, officials, students and servicemen on Sunday attended a ceremony held at the Museum of the War of Chinese People’s Resistance Against Japanese Aggression, which is located near the bridge.

“Only by facing up to the history and drawing lessons from the past, can the two countries push forward bilateral relations along the right track and have a bright future,” said Gao Hong, a research fellow at the Institute of Japanese Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).

“China and Japan should promote the long-term, healthy and stable development of bilateral relations in the spirit of taking history as a mirror and looking into the future and consolidate mutual trust,” said Fan Xiaoju, executive director of the Institute of Japanese Studies under the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations.

During their meeting on June 27 in Osaka, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed that their countries will hold fast to various principles stipulated in the four political documents between China and Japan and implement the political consensus that they are cooperative partners who never pose a threat to each other.

The two countries will also uphold the spirit of replacing competition with coordination and continue to push forward the China-Japan relations on the right track.

Gao said in the new era, the two countries should develop bilateral ties by “discarding outdated mindsets, progressing hand in hand in the spirit of seeking common ground while reserving differences, and making efforts in building a community with a shared future for mankind.”

He said the Japanese side is expected to abide by the consensus it has reached with China so far, honor the commitments it has made so far and properly handle history and other sensitive issues.

The scholars hold that China and Japan share common interests in promoting the multilateral trading system and maintaining the global free trade system amid rising trade protectionism.

China and Japan are strengthening cooperation in a wide range of areas such as science and technology innovation, protection of intellectual property rights, trade and investment, finance, medical and health, old-age care, energy saving and environmental protection and tourism.

“Both countries have entered a new phase of economic development,” Fan said, noting that Japan has shown increasing interest in economic cooperation with China and had fresh response to the Belt and Road Initiative.

Both sides are working toward concrete results in third-party market cooperation, which will, in turn, boost the positive development of bilateral ties, said Fan.

The scholars pinned high hopes on a high-level consultation mechanism on people-to-people and cultural exchanges that is also among the consensus reached by the two leaders.

Gao said the establishment of the mechanism at the government level will promote exchanges between the two countries in various fields including education, scientific research and culture.