Japan's newly elected Prime Minister Shinzo Abe could visit China as early as October in order to build bridges with Beijing, AFP reported. Breaking the news in an interview with Japanese media on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Taro Aso added, "We must consider many things including the option of a visit to China by the prime minister. The change in the premiership came at a good time." Japanese officials had previously hoped to arrange a meeting between Chinese President Hu Jintao and Abe at the Asia-Pacific summit in Vietnam in November. Although Abe is known for his nationalistic views, he expressed his keenness to improve relations with China, saying when he took office on Tuesday that a peaceful China was "the most important country" for Japan. Abe's predecessor Junichiro Koizumi strained Sino-Japanese ties by making visits to the Yasukuni shrine, which honors both war dead and war criminals.