India and Japan have a long-standing relationship, based on mutual respect and shared values of democracy, freedom, and the rule of law
After hosting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, India will throw a red-carpet welcome for Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio when he pays an official visit to the country on March 20-21.

According to the Ministry of External Affairs, during his visit, Japanese PM Kishida will hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on issues of bilateral interests. Both leaders will also discuss bilateral and regional issues of mutual interest. They will also discuss their priorities for their respective Presidencies of the G7 and G20, the Ministry said.

India and Japan have a long-standing relationship, based on mutual respect and shared values of democracy, freedom, and the rule of law. The two nations have been cooperating in a number of areas, including defense, science and technology, and international affairs.

India and Japan have been working together on research and development in the technological and scientific fields including biotechnology, material science, and energy. There is an increasing interaction between scientists and researchers, and the two nations have created a number of cooperative research centres.

Apart from this, India and Japan have also improved their cultural ties throughout the years. As the cultural contact between the two nations has a long history, people in both nations are becoming increasingly interested in discovering more about one another's traditions. By the organization of numerous cultural events, festivals, and exhibits, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Japan Foundation have been fostering cultural interaction between the two nations.

India and Japan have been working closely together to improve maritime security and support regional stability. Additionally, the Indian Navy and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force have increased their collaboration, and the two nations frequently engage in joint naval exercises (JMSDF). India and Japan also exchange intelligence on matters pertaining to cyber security and counterterrorism.

India and Japan share ‘Special Strategic and Global Partnership’. Friendship between the two countries has a long history rooted in spiritual affinity and strong cultural and civilizational ties. India’s earliest documented direct contact with Japan was with the Todaiji Temple in Nara, where the consecration or eye-opening of the towering statue of Lord Buddha was performed by an Indian monk Bodhisena in 752 AD.

In contemporary times, there is growing strategic convergence between the two countries. There is synergy between India's Act-East Policy, Indo-Pacific vision based on the principle of SAGAR, and Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative (IPOI) on one hand, and Japan’s Free and Open Indo-Pacific Vision on the other.

Japan has agreed to lead cooperation on the Trade, Connectivity, and Maritime Transport pillar of IPOI. Japan has also joined India-led initiatives such as International Solar Alliance (ISA) and Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI). India and Japan are also cooperating under the Japan-Australia-India-US Quad framework and the India-Japan-Australia Supply Chain Resilience Initiative (SCRI).

Bilateral trade between India and Japan totalled $ 20.57 billion during 2021-22. Exports from Japan to India during this period were US$ 14.39 billion and imports were US$ 6.18 billion. Japan’s exports to India were 2.35% of India’s total imports and India’s exports to Japan were 1.46% of India’s total exports.

India’s primary exports to Japan are petroleum products, Organic chemicals, Electrical machinery and equipment, non-metallic mineral ware, fish & fish preparations, metalliferous ores & scrap, clothing & accessories, iron & steel products, textile yarn, fabrics and machinery etc. India’s primary imports from Japan are machinery, electrical machinery, iron and steel products, plastic materials, non-ferrous metals, parts of motor vehicles.

In 2020, Japan Bank of International Cooperation (JBIC) Survey Report on Overseas Business Operations by Japanese Manufacturing Companies (Survey of Overseas Direct Investment by Japanese Companies) ranked India a close second to China for Japanese outward FDI in mid-term (3 years).

Japanese FDI in India has increased in recent years but it still remains small compared to Japan's total outward FDI. Japanese outward FDI to India in 2019-20 and 2020-21 stood at USD 3.2 billion and USD 1.95 billion respectively. Cumulatively, from 2000 until September 2021, the investments to India have been around US$ 36.25 billion, ranking it fifth among source countries for FDI. Japanese FDI into India has mainly been in automobile, electrical equipment, telecommunications, chemical, financial (insurance) and pharmaceutical sectors.

The number of Japanese companies registered in India are 1439 as of June, 2022 with manufacturing firms accounting for half the total, according to the latest joint survey by the Embassy of Japan in India and the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO). Similarly, more than 100 Indian companies are working in Japan. India’s Net Foreign Direct Investment in Japan during FY 2020-21 is US$ 40.91 million.

Presently six Metro Rail projects (Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai) are being implemented with technical and financial support from the Government of Japan. JICA has extended ODA to develop these Metro systems and redesign the urban landscape through green transportation systems. Propulsion and control systems are also supplied by Japanese manufacturing companies with their base in India.

The first High Speed Rail (HSR) corridor is being implemented from Mumbai to Ahmedabad with technical and financial assistance from the Government of Japan. With a total twelve stations in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, the corridor has a length of 508.17km.

HSR will be operating at a speed of 320 kmph at an elevated track above the ground on a viaduct all along except 26km in Mumbai, which will be underground. The project envisages ‘Make in India’ as well as ‘Capacity Development’ to enable the Indian workforce to acquire skills relevant for Shinkansen technology. National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd (NHSRCL) has been modelled as a Special Purpose Vehicle for implementing the project.