The outcome of the summit shows India-Japan relations have attained a new high. During this summit, Kishida announced to invest 5 trillion yen ($42 billion) in India to finance public and private projects of mutual interest over the next five years. Modi assured that India was committed to providing a conducive environment for Japanese companies in India.
As expected, the 14th India-Japan summit between Indian and Japanese Prime Ministers in New Delhi (March 19-20, 2022) went off fine. During his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida's visit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi rightly said, "Our mutual trust, our shared values such as our civilisational ties, democracy, freedom, and rule of law, are at the core of our relations."
Observers say that this core of India-Japan relations reflects itself best in the Modi-Kishida summit. The outcome of the summit shows India-Japan relations have attained a new high. During this summit, Kishida announced to invest 5 trillion yen ($42 billion) in India to finance public and private projects of mutual interest over the next five years. Modi assured that India was committed to providing a conducive environment for Japanese companies in India. It has now been agreed that India would give greater access to its market for Japanese apples. Indian mangoes would make an entry into Japan.
Modi and Kishida decided to increase coordination at the United Nations and other international fora to preserve the contemporary global order based on the UN Charter, international law and respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states. They reaffirmed their "common vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific, free from coercion." They reaffirmed their determination to continue prioritising the role of international law, particularly the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and facilitate collaboration, including in maritime security, to meet challenges against the rules-based maritime order in the East and South China Seas.
India-Japan ties have attained rare maturity. This can be seen in the way the two leaders have handled their well-known differences over the issue of the present Ukrainian conflict. Addressing a joint media briefing with Prime Minister Modi, Kishida took a stand hardly objectionable to India. He said that one-sided efforts to change the status quo by force could not be allowed in any sector. But India and Japan have cared not to mention Russia in their joint statement.
Modi and Kishida called for an immediate cessation of violence in Ukraine and said there was no other choice but "the path of dialogue and diplomacy for resolution of the conflict." Both leaders also underscored the importance of the safety and security of nuclear facilities in Ukraine. Kishida even asked Modi to continue a dialogue with Russian President Vladimir Putin on this issue.
Relations between India and Japan are poised to grow further under Prime Ministers Modi and Kishida. Modi has always been for deepening the India-Japan partnership to promote peace, prosperity and stability in the Indo-Pacific region and the entire world. On his part, since he was Japan's Foreign Minister, Kishida has played a key role in the progress of the India-Japan Special Strategic and Global Partnership.
(The author is a New Delhi-based journalist)