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Japan-Myanmar Relations

On November 2, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with H.E. Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, State Counsellor of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar. From the perspective of giving robust support to the initiatives of the State Counsellor, Prime Minister Abe explained that Japan plans to give assistance totaling 40 billion yen over five years to areas with ethnic minority peoples to support advances in reconciliation. Prime Minister Abe also stated that Japan plans to provide assistance on behalf of peace and stability in Rakhine State that confronts complicated issues.

Prime Minister Abe stated Japan plans to contribute 800 billion yen over five years, starting this fiscal year, at public and private levels including assistance to areas with ethnic minority peoples, agriculture, Yangon urban development, electric power, airports, and human resource training, and to support renovations to hydropower facilities and expansion of regional hospitals as part of these activities.

Prime Minister Abe explained that Japan promises to promote responsible investment that improves the standard of living for the Myanmar people and plans to steadily promote development adhering to international standards in the Thilawa special economic zone as a symbol. Prime Minister Abe explained Japan will launch an Innovative Asia program as a new effort to train and promote circulation of advanced human resources, including internship opportunities in Japan, from the next fiscal year. Additionally, he noted that Japan plans to implement exchanges and human resource development on the scale of 1,000 people a year. Prime Minister Abe explained that Japan hopes to continue and expand defense cooperation and exchanges, including acceptance of Myanmar students to the Ministry of Defense’s educational institutes, interactions at the senior officer level, and assistance for building capabilities to deal with disasters.

Japan-India Summit Meeting

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held a Japan-India Summit Meeting with H.E. Mr. Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, on November 11. Prime Minister Abe expressed his pleasure over the signature of the Agreement between the Government of Japan and the Government of the Republic of India for Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy. Prime Minister Abe also expressed his intention to further promote cooperation on defense equipment and technology, including the strategically important US-2 amphibian aircraft.

Regarding high-speed rail, Prime Minister Abe explained that if the Shinkansen system were also introduced on future railway lines, it would lead to more powerful pursuit of the transfer of high-speed railway technologies, thereby contributing to “Make in India.” Moreover, Prime Minister Abe explained initiatives such as the establishment of the Japan-India Institute for Manufacturing (JIM), providing Japanese-style manufacturing skills and practices, in an effort to enhance India’s manufacturing industry base, and the launch of “Innovative Asia,” a human resources development project utilizing ODA.

Prime Minister Abe requested India’s early decision on introducing special incentive packages in Japanese industrial townships, and asked for discussions to be held on support for expanding local production of environmentally friendly vehicles in order to popularize them.

Prime Minister Abe discussed a further easing of visas in order to increase the number of Indian tourists visiting Japan and the establishment of a Japan National Tourism Organization office in Delhi. The next day, November 12, the leaders visited a factory specializing in the construction of railway cars in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, where they viewed Shinkansen cars, as well as completed Shinkansen bodies.