Prime Minister Narendra Modi was on a three-day visit to Japan from November 10 to 12, 2016 to attend the Annual India-Japan Bilateral Summit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo to strengthen the bilateral ties between the two states.
- During the visit Prime Minister Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the field of civil nuclear deal and nine other agreements in various fields.
- Modi also attended an India-Japan Business Leaders’ Forum and addressed a formal meeting organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Japanese Business Federation.
- On November 13, 2016, Mr. Modi, along with Abe, travelled by the Shinkansen high-speed bullet train from Tokyo to Kobe and was received at Hyogo Prefecture guest house by the Governor of Hyogo Toshizo Ido and Mayor of Kobe Kyuzo Hisamaoto.
- He also visited the Kawasaki Heavy Industries plant there to get a brief knowledge of the technology. The Prime Minister interacted with the Indian community both in Tokyo and Kobe.
- This was Modi’s second visit to Japan in two years.
Highlight’s of the Agreements/MoU’s signed:
MoU in the field of civil nuclear deal:
The MoU was signed for bilateral cooperation in the field of Nuclear Energy. It will help to strengthen of energy security of India, through the development of nuclear power projects in India based on Japanese Nuclear Technology. This civil nuclear programme will also help in future collaboration between Indian and Japanese industries.
Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) on the Manufacturing Skill Transfer Promotion Program:
The MoC was inked between the Union Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship and Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. It plans to train 30,000 Indian youth in the Japanese styled manufacturing in the next 10 years. The facility will be provided by the Japan-India Institute for Manufacturing (JIM) and the Japanese Endowed Courses (JEC) in select Engineering colleges. It will contribute to ‘Make in India’ and ‘Skill India’.
MoU in the Field of Outer Space:
The MoU signed between ISRO and JAXA aims to provide cooperation in planetary exploration, satellite navigation and space industry promotion, joint use of ground systems, joint missions and studies for mutual support and personnel exchange.
MoU in Marine and Earth Science and Technology:
It was signed between Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) and Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC).
- The main objective was the advancement of academic research in the field of Earth Sciences for the benefit of the peace and human welfare. This MoU aims at promoting cooperation in the areas of joint survey and research, promote an exchange of scientific visits by researchers and experts, joint scientific seminars and workshops and exchange of information, data and studied results.
MoC in the Field of Agriculture and Food Related Industry:
The pact was signed between the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare and Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan.
- It aims to deepen the bilateral cooperation in the fields of agriculture and food industries between industries related to food value chain networking and protecting Geographical Indication (GI) of agriculture products.
MoU for Transport and Urban Development:
It was signed between National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) Limited and Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation (JICA).
- It focuses on promoting investment in infrastructure projects in transportation and railways, port terminals, toll roads, logistics, airport terminals, urban development and any supporting industries for these sectors. The MoU also enables the two countries to explore opportunities to set up an NIIF-JOIN joint fund.
MoU in the Field of Textiles:
It signed between Textiles Committee of Union Ministry of Textiles and Japan Textiles Products Quality and Technology Centre (QTEC).
- It aims to improve quality of Indian Textiles for compliance with Japanese market. It involves capacity building measures for the Textiles Committee and aligns the Indian Quality Control measures in line with Japanese market and technical standards.
Agreement in the Field of Cultural Exchange:
It seeks to promote bilateral cooperation in the field of art & culture between both countries. It includes exchange of exhibitions & personnel in performing and visual arts, exchange of exhibitions and experts from museums, cooperation in preserving the cultural heritage and to promote people-to-people exchanges
MoC on Cooperation in Sports:
It aims to provide a framework for bilateral cooperation in the field of Sports ahead of the forthcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.
MOU between Gujarat and Hyogo Prefectural Government:
The agreement was signed signed between the Department of Industries & Mines of Government Gujarat and International Affairs Bureau of Hyogo Prefectural Government.
- It aims to promote mutual cooperation between Hyogo and Gujarat in the fields of business, academics, cultural cooperation, disaster management and environmental protection. As per the agreement, a steering committee will be constituted to oversee the implementation of the MOU. It will also identify the agencies to carry out designated activities.
Agreement for Double taxation Avoidance Convention
A Protocol to amend the Double Taxation Avoidance Convention (DTAC) between India and Japan for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income was signed on 11th December, 2015.
- The protocol has been entered into force on 29th October, 2016 on completion of procedural requirements by both the countries.
- The Protocol aims to promote transparency and cooperation between the two countries.
Key Points of Protocol
- It emphasizes on adapting internationally accepted standards for effective exchange of information on tax matters including bank information and information without domestic tax interest.
- It states that the information received from Japan in respect of a resident of India can be shared with other law enforcement agencies with authorization of the Competent Authority of Japan and vice versa.
- It provides for exemption of interest income from taxation in the source country with respect to debt-claims insured by the Government or Government owned financial institutions.
- As per a new article inserted in the protocol, both India and Japan shall assist each other in the collection of revenue claims.
♦ Capital: Tokyo
♦ Currency: Japanese yen
♦ Prime minister: Shinzō Abe