On March 20-21, 2023, Fumio Kishida, Prime Minister (PM) of Japan, paid a two-day visit to India and held the ‘Japan-India Summit Meeting 2023’ with PM of India Narendra Modi, to discuss ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation in a number of fields, including defence and security, trade and investment, and high technology.
- PM Fumio Kishida met with PM Narendra Modi at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, Delhi, to discuss priorities as Japan assumes the G7 (Group of Seven) presidency in 2023 and India holds the G20 (Group of Twenty) presidency in 2023.
- This is Kishida’s second visit to India as Japan’s PM.
The year 2022 commemorated the 70th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between India and Japan.
Highlights of The Summit Meeting:
i.Japan’s PM, Fumio Kishida, discussed the “Japan-India Special Strategic and Global Partnership” and efforts to realise a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” (FOIP), with a focus on India’s rising prominence in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
ii.Fumio Kishida presented the 41st Sapru House Lecture on “Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP),” and also paid a visit to Delhi’s Buddha Jayanti Park.
iii.He has held discussions with PM Modi in light of the upcoming G7 Summit in Hiroshima in May 2023 and the G20 Summit in New Delhi in September 2023.
Enhancing Bilateral Cooperation
i.The leaders of Japan and India, PM Fumio Kishida and PM Modi, reaffirmed their commitment to continuing their partnership through the ‘Japan-India Act East Forum’ in order to advance the development of India’s northeastern region.
ii.The two leaders reaffirmed their commitment to advancing bilateral cooperation under the “India-Japan Clean Energy Partnership,” which was announced in 2022.
iii.PM Modi further declared that the year 2023 will be celebrated as “Japan-India tourism exchange year” with the theme “Connecting the Himalayas with Mount Fuji”.
India & Japan Sign 2 MoU On Cooperation On Japanese Language & Bullet Train
In conjunction with Japan’s PM Fumio Kishida visit to India on March 20, 2023, two agreements were signed between India and Japan. They are as follows:
i.Exchange of Notes concerning the FY2022 Yen Loan for the “Project for Construction of Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (IV)” [loan provision of up to 300 billion yen]
ii.India-Japan Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) in the Field of Japanese Language Education in India
i.Exchange of Notes of tranche-IV JICA ODA Loan of JPY 300 billion for Mumbai Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (MAHSR)
Suzuki Hiroshi, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to India, and Ajay Seth, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Ministry of Finance (MoF), Government of India (GoI), exchanged the notes concerning the granting of Japanese Yen loan for the Project for Construction of Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail (MAHSR) (IV) (loan provision of up to 300 billion yen).
Overview of the project
i.This project will grant funding to the GoI to build a high-speed rail network that will use the Shinkansen system of Japan to connect Ahmedabad (Gujarat), and Mumbai (Maharashtra).
- Interest rate: 0.1% per annum
- Repayment period: 50 years (including a 15-year grace period)
Earlier in 2022, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and GoI signed a loan agreement for Tranche 3 of the “Project for the Construction of Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR),” often known as the “bullet train,” to grant an Official Development Assistance (ODA) loan of 100,000 million Japanese Yen (about Rs. 6,000 crore).
ii.India & Japan Sign MoC in The Field of Japanese Language Education in India
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), GoI, and the Japanese Minister of Foreign Affairs have agreed on an agreement to renew the Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) for Japanese language education in India.
- This MOC on Japanese language learning is mostly concerned with higher-level language development.
Recent Related News:
In March 2023, The JICA signed loan agreements with the GoI in Delhi to offer Japanese Official Development Assistance ODA loans totaling 40,673 million yen for the following two projects:
i.Mumbai Trans-Harbour Link Project (III) (Loan Amount: 30,755 Million Yen)
ii.Project for Establishing a State Super-Specialty Cancer and Research Center in Mizoram, with 164 beds (Loan Amount: 9,918 Million Yen)
Prime Minister – Fumio Kishida
Currency– Japanese Yen