Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Saturday that the ‘Make in India’ initiative has become “a movement” in Japan and that the collaboration between the two countries should move beyond high-speed trains in the direction of “high-speed growth”. Echoing the view, visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the two countries need to work closely with regard to economic cooperation as it will benefit both.
“Today, there is a ‘Make In India’ movement in Japan. I have been told that $11-12 billion fund has been earmarked for it. This clearly indicates how both the countries can move forward,” he said while addressing the India-Japan Business Leaders Forum here. ‘Make in India’, he said, is proceeding in mission mode, not just in India, but also in Japan. Modi also said that for the first time Japan will import cars from India.
“Maruti (Suzuki India Ltd) will manufacture here… Japanese company will manufacture here and export it to Japan,” he said, adding that both India and Japan should move ahead together, not just in the sphere of high-speed trains, but also for “high-speed growth.”
Speaking of his last visit to the country, Modi said Japan committed an investment of $35 billion. “The figure had surprised many at that time, but today, within a short time-span, unimaginable progress had been made, and the contours of this investment were beginning to get visible on the ground,” he said.
Highlighting the improvement in economic indicators in both India and Japan, he said these were extremely encouraging, especially in the light of the global economic slowdown. “It is clear that India is a land of possibilities,” he added.
Praising Modi’s reforms programme, Abe said, “Prime Minister Modi’s speed of implementing policies and reforms is like Shinkansen (bullet train) and his reform agenda is as safe as Shinkansen.” Abe also said that India has become a very attractive investment destination for Japan.
“Strong Japan is good for India and strong India is good for Japan… I hope economic ties between our two countries will be ever closer,” Abe said.
In his speech, Modi said “Japan Plus” initiative that began last year in India as a policy experiment, is also doing well. India wants not only high speed train, but also high speed growth, Modi said, adding that Indo-Japan business forum has discussed various opportunities between the countries.
Recommendations given by the forum will be actively considered by the Indian government, he said. Economies of both the countries are showing signs of improvement amidst global slowdown, he said, adding, “Japan economic analysis which came yesterday (Friday) was very encouraging. Even India’s manufacturing number was 10.6 per cent and 9.8 per cent IIP indicates growth.”
Modi said there is a need to move forward, taking advantage of the strength of human resources and technological base. He added that the strategy adopted to improve India’s position in the Ease of Doing Business rankings, policy decisions and their effective implementation are now showing results.
Bilateral trade between the two countries stood at $15.51 billion in 2014-15 as against $ 16.29 billion in 2013-14. India received $19.16 billion FDI from Japan during April 2000 and September 2015. Speaking after the meeting, Maruti Suzuki chairman R C Bhargava said the company will export ‘Baleno’ at the moment. When asked about the target, Bhargava said “we expect to export 20,000 to 30,000 in a year.” He, however, added that exporting automobiles to Japan is not an easy task.
‘Make the most of growth in India’
New Delhi: Terming Japan as India’s major partner in its infrastructure development, President Pranab Mukherjee asked Japanese private sector to seize opportunities available here due to current growth rate.
Welcoming visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe here at Rashtrapati Bhavan, Mukherjee said India attaches high value to its partnership with Japan and considers Japan a key strategic partner. Bilateral relations between India and Japan have been strengthened through efforts of successive governments in both countries, he said. (With PTI inputs)
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