Prime Minister Fumio Kishida listens to a reporter's question at a news conference in Tokyo on Saturday night. Photo: Nicolas Datiche/Pool via AP

Kishida to announce new Indo-Pacific plan; seek India's support

By Krishn Kaushik and Yukiko Toyoda

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will on Monday announce a new plan for an open and free Indo-Pacific in New Delhi and seek India's support to partner with Tokyo to check China's growing influence across the region.

Under the plan, which will be announced during Kishida's visit to India from Monday to Wednesday, Japan will increase support to emerging economies, especially in the region, Japanese officials said.

India and Japan have been adding more depth to their relations, especially in defense and strategic affairs, as both face threats from a dominant China.

Kishida’s decision to announce his new plan during the annual summit between the two countries underlines the importance Tokyo places on New Delhi as a key player in the Indo-Pacific region.

Japanese officials said that Kishida believes that given India’s strategic geopolitical location in the Indian Ocean, and as the world’s largest democracy, it will play a significant role in realizing his vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific.

India and Japan, along with the United States and Australia, are members of the so-called Quad which seeks to counter China’s growing heft in the region.

Quad members say it is not a military grouping but they will jointly participate in the annual Malabar naval wargaming exercise in Australia this year, which will also host the Quad summit in May.

Former Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe shared a close relationship with Modi and Japanese officials said Kishida is keen to build a similar bond.

During his talks with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi, Kishida is expected to seek India's cooperation for the new plan, which will include steps Japan will take to strengthen cooperation in countries that adhere to the principles of peaceful resolution of disputes and freedom of navigation.

This, officials said, also comes in the context of Russia's war in Ukraine and China’s aggressive maritime posture.

While Japan has been pushing for more sanctions against Russia, India, which heads G20 this year, has been trying to prevent the forum from being used for any such announcement.

India has declined to blame Russia for the war and has sought a diplomatic solution while boosting its purchases of Russian oil.

Kishida also wants to improve the maritime warning and surveillance capabilities of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries and hopes India will actively join hands with Japan to develop infrastructure like ports in Asia and Africa.

Modi and Kishida met three times in 2022, including at Abe's funeral, and will meet at least three more times in 2023 on the sidelines of the G20, G7 and Quad summits.

The two countries have a comprehensive economic partnership and trade was worth $20.57 billion in 2021-2022, with India importing Japanese goods valued at $14.49 billion.

© Thomson Reuters 2023.

©2023 GPlusMedia Inc.

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Both India and Japan have a common enemy China but China is no threat to Japan. China already witnessed the horrific outcome of the Ukrainian war it would jeopardize China to even attempt to attack Japan militarily.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

The long hatred between China and Japan is a duel, with or without the Info pacific strategy has nothing to do with it. Japan's high posture will just further anger China and seeking the final settlement of the duel. Taiwan was a problem caused by Japan since 1895.

But I am amazed by Kishida's absurdity over hoping India is a partner can help, India concerns Pakistan much more than rivalry with China. Pakistan has nuclear weapons, Pakistan military is supported by China and Pakistan has freedom fighters fighting in Kashmir. They just don't give a damn care about Japan security!

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Abe also had a love affair with Putin and how did that work out? Modi's India has an overinflated ego and declining democratic institutions. Sure, be friendly, but don't count on anything in the end from India, it is self-absorbed.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

There goes our tax money!

Again and again and again…

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

elephant200Today  05:36 pm JST

Taiwan was a problem caused by Japan since 1895.

Totally wrong. Japan returned Taiwan to the rightful government of China (ROC) at the end of WWII. And Taiwan has remained under ROC control to this day.

The "problem" is the PRC (China) trying to take Taiwan and willing to use miliary means to do so.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

nosukeToday  04:50 pm JST

Both India and Japan have a common enemy China but China is no threat to Japan.

China is very much a threat to Japan. China's goal of controlling the East and South China Seas can close cricial shipping lanes upon which Japan relies. China's continued threat to militarily take Taiwan will likely result in a war that will disrupt the entire region. And with the US supportinh Taiwan, any country that is allied with the US and/or hosts US forces will be targets for China. China is already trying to take the Senkakus, a part of Okinawa Prefecture, from Japan's control.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

All the problems in the Indo Pacific, East China Sea, South China Sea, etc, etc, Is due to the concept of 1st Island Chain, you all know created by whom, for what purpose, even Taiwan's problem will go away, or solved. All these problems in East Asia will disappear, all East Asian Nations, South East Asian Nations will co operated, in all issues, and bring peace and prosperity to all its citizen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I appreciate the PMs efforts with this

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Modi is an interesting guy, he likes hugging foreign leaders whoever providing can providing financial aid or selling India some new weapons:

Modi hugged the following people: Trump,Putin,Netanyahu,Abe,Macron,Albanese...for convenience.He just don't like China or Chinese leaders because China providing loans, weapons and support in the UNSC to Pakistan. He knows India shall never rise up as a world power if the problem of Pakistan unsolved. And it was China using Pakistan that got him a big problem. India can't help Japan much in security, Modi likes bluffing and keep bluffing to make Abe and now Kishida to believe him!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

:) Modi was sanctioned by the American, as in black listed, ban from entering America, etc, until, the American needed him, to do their bidding, and became, "friend". So, you can guess the hypocrisy involved??

0 ( +0 / -0 )

India has surpassed Japan economically and India isn't on board as much as kishida or the article thinks.

India does massive business with China and many countries and uses Russian petroleum resources to do it.

Manufacturering medicine , textiles etc etc

India has a more successful economy and larger more capable military than Japan.

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

Most Indians want to see a strong and militarily powerful Japan, which they still regard as the leading Asian nation just like they did a hundred years ago.

India will be the one country in favour of a modern day Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere with Japan at its centre.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

See Joe? I'm pushing your agenda here. Pat me on the back Joe. Come to G7 and let's shake hands for the photographers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They could call it the indo-japan plan as japan is the most desperate country in urgent need of capturing the potential future growing power of India in the next 40-50 years or so in order not to complete on the global economy like it used to to do but only to being able to survive!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There is already a free and open Indo-Pacific. Even warmongering US, UK, French, Australian and now German, fully armed offensive ships and subs and planes pass through there. So it sounds like Kishida wants it not to be free and open.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Most Indians want to see a strong and militarily powerful Japan, which they still regard as the leading Asian nation just like they did a hundred years ago.

most Indians live in rural areas with a literacy rate of around 66.7%. I doubt they have a basic understanding of world geopolitics, regional history, or world financial markets and trading.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Japan should buy the nuke off India.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In a perfect world, we all would not have to be afraid of China. Since the dictator Xi took over, the prospects for peace have gone downhill.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Whatever Kishida plans, India and Australia won't be a part of it.

Australia has ‘absolutely not’ committed to join US in event of war over Taiwan, Marles says

Defence minister says Aukus deal does not include arrangement to join US in a potential future conflict with China

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

ughh.. new plan, as in more money to India, who we all know, as soon as Kishida turns his back on, will go to Russia for double dipping

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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