Home/ News / World/  Japan-India discuss multiple projects

New Delhi: Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s visit to India, which ended on Monday, placed semiconductor cooperation, the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project and the development of the Northeast in focus. The two-day visit was Kishida’s second to India since taking office as Prime Minister in 2021.

In one of the key deliverables, the two sides signed an Exchange of Notes for the fourth tranche of a Japanese loan to help build the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail Corridor, India’s first bullet train project. The tranche is worth 300 billion yen or around 18,000 crore.

The project, which was initially scheduled to be completed by 2023, ran into a series of delays related to land acquisition. Mint had earlier reported that a high-level Japanese delegation led by a special advisor to Kishida visited India in January to discuss cost overruns and delays with the Indian government. As much as 80% of the funding for the project is to come from Japanese coffers in the form of an easy loan.

Cooperation to develop India’s strategically sensitive Northeast, which Japan has undertaken through agencies like the Japan International Cooperation Association, was also in focus.

“Northeast India, which is surrounded by land, still has unexploited economic potential. Viewing Bangladesh and other areas of the South as a single economic zone, we will promote the Bay of Bengal-North East India industrial value chain concept in cooperation with India and Bangladesh in order to foster growth in the entire region," said Kishida while delivering the Sapru House Lecture in New Delhi.

Mint had earlier reported on Japan’s ambitious plans to capture economic investment moving out of more pricey Southeast Asian markets towards India’s Northeast and Bangladesh. By linking regional infrastructure development efforts and removing policy barriers through economic cooperation agreements, the three countries hope to develop the Northeast and Bangladesh as hubs of manufacturing.

Japan is also ready to make investments for such expansive ambitions, indicated Kishida.

Kishida “also announced that Japan would mobilize a total of more than $75 billion in public and private funds in the Indo-Pacific region by 2030 in infrastructure and grow together with other countries," according to a press release by the Japanese Embassy in New Delhi.

Kishida also spoke of his plans to rewrite rules related to the disbursement of Japan’s official development assistance (ODA) to developing nations. India has received a mammoth 3,600 billion yen or 2.16 trillion as ODA loans from Japan, according to the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Semiconductors, said foreign secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra, were a major topic of discussion between the two prime ministers. In particular, joint research, modernisation of existing facilities, developing a skills base and direct investment were the key areas of discussion.

However, Kwatra did not confirm if any specific investment proposals into the Indian market were on the table.

Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Updated: 20 Mar 2023, 11:59 PM IST
Recommended For You
Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My Reads Watchlist Feedback Redeem a Gift Card Logout