New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Monday, Oct 4, congratulated Kishida Fumio on being elected by his party as the Prime Minister of Japan.
"I look forward to working with him to further strengthen the India-Japan Special Strategic and Global Partnership and advance peace and prosperity in our region and beyond," Mr Modi wrote in a tweet.
Fumio Kishida was elected Japan's prime minister in a parliamentary vote and is expected to be heading for a national election within the next few weeks. Of course, he is tasked with tackling the pandemic challenge and other domestic and global challenges in the given situation.
Kishida is generally expected to toe the line of the erstwhile leadership of Shinzo Abe, which was quite India friendly, especially during the stint of Narendra Modi since 2014.
Kishida's victory, analysts say, is also because of the backing of the conservative wing and those preferring the policy actions defined by Abe. Kishida has also criticised China's economic and political aggression during his time as a candidate and, importantly, said that he would be working closely with India and the likes of the US and Australia, and even Europe, who "share the same values".
From a security perspective, it is arguably stated that Japanese lawmakers from across the political spectrum and a large section of common citizens have become "increasingly concerned" about China and its new intent.
Kishida holds the credit of being Japan's 'longest-serving foreign minister', thus bringing a wealth of diplomatic experience into the coveted executive position.
The 64-year-old Kishida has an image as a 'consensus builder', and thus stability and continuity would remain the top focus of his government. His new cabinet is also "dominated by allies" of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who was also in office for a longer stint than usually happens with the Japanese Prime Ministers.
Though China is an increasingly assertive neighbour for Japan, it is also a key economic partner. Japan has lately joined the Quad formation comprising itself, the US, India and Australia.
Observers say the new PM Kishida has already signalled to the United States and others that there will be a little deviation from the positions staked out by his two immediate predecessors – Shinzo Abe and Yoshihide Suga.