India and Japan could announce the undertaking of joint infrastructure projects in the Indo-Pacific region during a summit meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe early next week. One of the key agreements the two sides expect to sign during the 28-29 October meeting is on Japan giving a second tranche of funds for the flagship Mumbai-Ahmedabad high speed railway, foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale said. A first tranche of funds of ₹5,500 crore was given to India last month.
Modi is set to meet Abe for the 12th time in four-and-a-half years on Monday, signalling the strong ties between Asia’s second and third largest economies. Modi will arrive in Japan on Saturday as Abe returns from a three-day visit to China, his first in six years to Beijing following tensions between the neighbours over some islands in the East China Sea. Abe has repeatedly said that a strong India is in Japan’s interest and has extended cooperation for infrastructure and flagship programmes such as Digital India, Skill India and Make in India. All of these were aimed at propelling India into a higher economic growth and development orbit.