New Japan PM Good for India, Too

Indian officials believe Shinzo Abe’s landslide election victory this weekend means the long-awaited bilateral nuclear agreement with Japan “will come through”. Earlier attempts by Tokyo have foundered due to India’s unwillingness to sign the test ban treaty. Not only is Liberal Democratic Party’s Abe the most pro-Indian prime minister Japan has ever had, he campaigned on an openly pro-nuclear platform. His victory indirectly boosts India’s nuclear programme by laying to rest the ghost of Fukushima. Despite the accident, Japan’s Sankei newspaper says this election saw pro-nuclear legislators increase their number from 132 to 346.

Indian officials expect Abe to robustly push Japanese investment into the country.

Japanese firms already are big investors, but more would come if they get a “helping hand” from Tokyo.

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India and Japan PMs seal the deal on a new trade pact, discuss nuclear deal

India and Japan’s premiers Monday said they had broadly agreed on a pact to step up trade between the population giant and the high-tech nation but needed time for a deal on civilian nuclear cooperation.

India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his counterpart Naoto Kan also stressed the warm ties linking two of Asia’s biggest democracies, at a time of high diplomatic tensions between Japan and communist-ruled China.

Kan said after talks with Singh, who was on a three-day Tokyo visit, that "through this meeting, we were able to confirm and be confident about progress in the strategic global partnership between Japan and India".

The two leaders declared the completion of talks on a free trade and investment pact, with a formal signing expected in coming months, under which tariffs on 94 percent of trade would be phased out within a decade.

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