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PM Modi and his Japanese counterpart will participate in 12th India-Japan annual summit
With a major ray of hope for India’s High Speed Rail (HSR), Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has arrived Ahmedabad on Wednesday for a two-day visit to attend the annual bilateral summit and laying foundation for the first bullet train in the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi received the Japanese PM and his wife Akie Abe at the airport.

PM Modi and his Japanese counterpart will be attending the 12th edition of the India-Japan annual summit at Modi’s home state Gujarat. Earlier PM Modi and Abe had met for 10 times including four crucial summit meetings.

To welcome the Japanese PM, two years after Modi hosted Chinese President Xi Jinping in Ahmedabad, a rare 8-Km long road-show had been planned. Furthermore, more than 25 stages had been installed throughout the stretch to welcome the visiting dignitary. PM hosted the Japanese Prime Minister and his wife at terrace restaurant Agashiye, at the heritage hotel House of Mangaldas and Girdhardas, located across Sidi Saiyyed Ni Jali road.

During the two-day visit, PM Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe are expected to lay the foundation stone of the 508-km long Mumbai-Ahmadabad bullet train on Thursday. The project, scheduled to be completed on December 2023 is expected to reduce the travel distance between Mumbai and Ahmedabad to around two hours from the existing 7 hours.

Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has said at a press conference “The project will integrate the Indian Railways to the global transportation technology and will help rewrite India’s transport infrastructure narrative.”

He further said, “Unfortunately, Indian railways have not graduated from the colonial-era technologies and practices in past four or five decades. Exposure to the high speed technology (popularly called the bullet trains) will enable rail engineers in India to innovate and modernize systems and practices.”

With Japan’s keen interest to scale-up its partnership in key flagship projects like Make in India, Skill India and the Clean Ganga Mission, India is expected to be benefitted from Japanese technology in several sectors. And while India eyes to expand Japanese aids in areas such as environment protection, sewage building, forest protection, Japan had also shown its interest to expand the development cooperation to the north eastern parts of India.

India and Japan are expected to enhance their bilateral ties with Asian and African countries, especially in developing frastructural projects. Japan’s ambassador to India Kenji Hiramatsu has recently said during  an interview, “While Indian companies enjoy a large presence in Africa, Japanese companies possess advanced technologies. If we come together there, it could be a win-win situation for both countries.”

Furthermore, Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Gujarat Maritime Board are expected to sign an agreement for developing the Alang ship building yard. Earlier, Gujarat Chief Secretary, JN Singh had asserted that 15 Japanese companies, including Moresco, Toyoda Gosei, Topre and Murakami are keen to invest in Gujarat.

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