What’s in the news?
- India and Japan have set an investment target of “five trillion yen” ($42 billion) in the next five years, the leaders announced after a meeting in New Delhi for the 14th annual summit, where several agreements were signed.
- This was the first India–Japan annual summit since 2018, which had been postponed due to protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and then due to the pandemic.
- PM Modi said as the global post–covid recovery process falters and geopolitical developments present new challenges, it was necessary to deepen the India–Japan partnership, which would have an impact on the Indo–Pacific region, and the world, adding that the two leaders had also discussed strengthening bilateral cooperation including at the United Nations.
- While Japan has consistently criticised Russia’s Ukraine invasion and imposed several sanctions on Russia including economic and oil equipment export bans, India has thus far refused to vote for any resolutions criticising Russia, and Indian companies are stepping up their intake of Russian oil.
- The two sides also exchanged six agreements on cybersecurity, economic partnerships, waste–water management, urban development, a clean energy partnership and an agreement on promoting bamboo–based products from the northeast region.
- The two sides also concluded a roadmap for competitive partnership for the MSMEs and the small–scale sector companies.
- The “2+2” meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers in the next few months is due to take forward agreements on the strategic partnership and PM Modi is expected to visit Tokyo in May or June, where he will hold another bilateral summit and attend the Quad summit with the U.S. President and the Australian Prime Minister.