Japan starts strategic talks with India, extends Rs2,620-cr ODA loan

17 January 2015

Sushma SwrajJapanese foreign minister Fumio Kishida, who arrived here on Friday for the India-Japan strategic talks, called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of scheduled talks with his Indian counterpart Sushma Swraj.

The two foreign ministers are expected to discuss a whole range of issues of mutual interest, including joint production of amphibious aircraft US-2, removing hurdles to finalising a civil nuclear deal, enhancing maritime security cooperation and implementing several mega infrastructure projects.

Japan also extended an Official Development Loan Assistance (ODA) of Yen 50 billion (about Rs2,620 crore) to India for the PPP Infrastructure Financing Project of Infrastructure Investment and Finance Corporation Ltd (IIFCL)

Rajesh Khullar, joint secretary in the finance ministry's department of economic affairs and Takeshi Yagi, Japan's ambassador to India exchanged the notes regarding the ODA loan, provided by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), in New Delhi on Friday.

India and Japan have had a long and fruitful history of bilateral development cooperation since 1958. In the last few years the economic partnership between India and Japan has steadily progressed. This further consolidates and strengthens the Strategic and Global Partnership between India and Japan.

Deputy press secretary, ministry of foreign affairs of Japan Ken Okaniwa said the leaders will also discuss the Tokyo Declaration issued during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Tokyo in September last year.

Okaniwa also hinted at the possibility of Japan allowing joint production of US-2 aircraft in India.

He said the September summit had set the ball rolling for two government to start working-level consultations on cooperation in defence equipment production.

Besides bilateral cooperation, the two leaders are expected to discuss the kind of framework for future dialogue and ways of strengthening the India-Japan-US trilateral political dialogue, besides various regional and global issues, including reform of the Security Council.

The two leaders will also talk about "investment promotion partnership" and implementation of the major projects, including Mumbai-Ahmedabad high-speed train network, strengthening the existing railway tracks in certain areas and the freight corridor project.

He said improving road network in the northeast to link and linking the region with neighbouring South East Asian countries will also figure in the talks.

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