Chinese aggressive behaviour against its neighbours is likely to figure prominently during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s talks with his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida in New Delhi tomorrow.
Kishida’s much-anticipated visit that will last a little over 24 hours provides a great opportunity to the two nations to review the entire gamut of bilateral ties, particularly the threat from China.
The partnership between the two countries covers a whole range of issues like defence and security, trade and investment, S&T, Education, healthcare, and critical and emerging technologies.
The talks between the two PMs are also significant since India currently holds the presidency of G20 while Japan holds G7 presidency.
India and Japan share a ‘Special Strategic and Global Partnership’. Relations between them were elevated to ‘Global Partnership’ in 2000, ‘Strategic and Global Partnership’ in 2006, and ‘Special Strategic and Global Partnership’ in 2014. Regular Annual Summits have been held between India and Japan since 2006, the last summit having taken place in March 2022.
There are indications that Kishida will unveil a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific Plan for Peace”, with a special focus on the Global South, and seek India’s support for implementing it during his visit to New Delhi.
One of the key objectives of the plan will be to counter China’s growing influence and assertiveness across the region and to give developing countries more options in the field of development and security.
In a press briefing on Thursday, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said that Japan was a “very important partner” and stressed that India looked forward to the exchange of views between the two Prime Ministers.
“We look forward to the visit of the honourable Prime Minister of Japan. As you know, Japan is our very important partner. We have annual summits with them and this is part of that.
They are also partners in plurilateral and multilateral constructs so we look forward to a rich discussion. We look forward to the exchange of views,” he said.