Indo-Japan Annual Summit Likely in South India


New Delhi: The flavor for all Summit meetings appears to be South India specially Tamil Nadu with Prime Minister Narendra Modi likely to host Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for the annual Summit in the state.

This comes soon after the Sino-Indian Summit between Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping was held in Mamallpuram.

Abe is expected to visit India accompanied by a high-level delegation mid-December and the focus of talks will be to strengthen economic and defence relations between India and Japan.

“The location of Tamil Nadu has been shortlisted though not yet confirmed. Besides Gujarat, Northeast, another state getting a lot of investments from the Japanese government and companies is Tamil Nadu,” top sources said.

The Japanese leader during his earlier visits has already been to Varanasi in 2015 and Gujarat in 2017.

Though officially the date for the India-Japan annual summit which is the driving force of the relations has not been announced, most likely it will be on December 15. Under the framework of the Special Strategic and Global Partnership, at the sixth summit Modi and Abe are expected to explore new avenues for further deepening of relations.

Joint and trilateral military exercises, Space Cooperation, Indo-Pacific Region, Infrastructure projects, further strengthening of trade and economic ties will be on the agenda of talks.

“Working in trilateral projects in Africa is going to be another issue to be on the list of issues to be focussed during the talks. India, Japan and Africa have already started working on projects in some countries in that continent,” said a top diplomat.

Talks would also include subjects like Artificial Intelligence, Facial Recognition, Connectivity, Aviation, Tourism, and promoting Japan as a preferred destination in Bollywood.

Recently, Japan has fast emerged as a key source of new investments in Tamil Nadu, where One Hub Chennai, which has been jointly developed by Ascendas-Ireo beyond Tiruppur, is already a hub for Japanese companies. Another, a new industrial park, Origins, which is being promoted by Sumitomo-Mahindra is expected to become the second cluster for Japanese investments.

Yanmar, a leading global manufacturer of diesel engines of Japan is in the process of setting up an engine plant for Rs 500 crore at Origin and Nissei Electric is planning to invest around Rs 80 crore for electrical parts manufacturing.

With Tamil Nadu Business Facilitation Act and single window clearance in place, the state has become very proactive in attracting investments and in its effort to attract more investments from Japan has given 50 per cent exemption on stamp duty for the Sumitomo-Mahindra project.

Notably a Defence Corridor is also coming up in the state.