India, Japan sign 10 pacts including areas like space, agriculture, infrastructure, railways

11 November 2016, 07:08 PM
Narendra Modi and Shinzo Abe (Pic: Getty)
Narendra Modi and Shinzo Abe (Pic: Getty)

India and Japan on Friday signed 10 pacts covering a range of areas such as boosting Japanese investment in infrastructure, railways, and for cooperation in space and agriculture, as part of agreements to bolster bilateral ties.

An MoU was signed between the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Limited and Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corporation for Transport and Urban Development to enable cooperation and promote investment in infrastructure projects in railways & transportation; port terminals; toll roads; airport terminals and urban development.

"This MoU would also enable the two sides to explore opportunities to set up a NIIF-JOIN joint fund," the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.

Two memorandum of understandings were signed to boost cooperation in space technology. One of the MoUs between Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) concerned cooperation in outer space in satellite navigation and planetary exploration.

Also read: India, Japan sign landmark civil nuclear deal; PM Narendra Modi thanks Shinzo Abe's support for NSG membership

It also included joint missions and joint use of ground systems for mutual support.

The other MoU between India's Ministry of Earth Sciences and the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science aims to promote cooperation in areas of joint survey and research, and exchange of scientific visits by researchers and experts.

In past two years, India received about USD 55 billion in foreign direct investments, which, Modi has said during this visit, is "not only the highest ever FDI but also highest growth in FDI in India".

Also read: Indo-Japan civil nuclear deal signed: Here's why it matters for India

Making an exception, Japan also signed a historic civil nuclear cooperation deal with India. The agreements, including the one for cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy, marks a historic step in their engagement to build a clean energy partnership, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said after wide-ranging talks with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe.

The nuclear agreement comes after tough negotiations for over six years between the two countries and Abe said at the joint media interaction with Modi that he was delighted over the signing of agreement on peaceful use of nuclear energy.

"This agreement is a legal framework that India will act responsibly in peaceful uses of nuclear energy and also in Non-Proliferation regime even though India is not a participant or signatory of NPT," he said.

"It (the agreement) is in line with Japan's ambition to create a world without nuclear weapons," said Abe, whose country has traditionally adopted a tough stand on proliferation issues having been the only victim of atomic bombings during World War II.

He noted that India in September 2008 had made its intention of peaceful uses of nuclear energy and also announced moratorium on nuclear tests.

"Today's signing of the Agreement for Cooperation in Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy marks a historic step in our engagement to build a clean energy partnership," Modi said.

"Our cooperation in this field will help us combat the challenge of Climate Change. I also acknowledge the special significance that such an agreement has for Japan," he said and thanked Abe, Japanese government and Parliament for their support to this agreement.

Other nations who have signed civil nuclear deal with India include the US, Russia, South Korea, Mongolia, France, Namibia, Argentina, Canada, Kazakhstan and Australia.

In his remarks, Prime Minister Modi said as democracies, the two countries "support openness, transparency and the rule of law".

"We are also united in our resolve to combat the menace of terrorism, especially cross-border terrorism," he said. 

First Published: Friday, November 11, 2016 07:00 PM
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