TOKYO (Reuters) – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed to seek closer economic and military ties on Monday as the Japanese leader extended a diplomatic charm offensive that last week took him to India’s regional rival, China.
In a joint statement, the two leaders said they would begin regular talks between their foreign and defense ministers and committed to extending cooperation in areas ranging from agriculture and digital technology to investment in Indian rail projects and infrastructure.
Abe - Modi - Currency - Swap - Agreement
Abe and Modi also said they would conclude a $75 billion bilateral currency swap agreement and welcomed an agreement to deepen cooperation between their two navies.
“A strong India benefits Japan and a strong Japan benefits India,” Abe told reporters after he and Modi signed the statement.
Talks - Tokyo - Monday - Talks - Issues
The talks in Tokyo on Monday followed separate talks on regional issues between the two men the day before at Abe’s vacation home near Mount Fuji, the first time he has invited a foreign leader to his private lodge.
India and Japan have drawn closer as China’s power in Asia has grown. Tokyo is worried about Chinese activity in the Western Pacific. Delhi wants to keep Beijing influence out of the Indian Ocean.
Japan - Maritime - Defence - Force - Participant
In 2015, Japan’s Maritime Defence Force became a regular participant in an annual naval exercise, known as Malabar, that...
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