Reform and we’ll invest, India told

Kyodo

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Monday Japan is willing to cooperate in developing infrastructure in India, but urged the South Asian nation to pursue financial-sector regulatory reform and improve its tax system in order to increase Japanese investment there, Foreign Ministry officials said.

In a meeting with Indian Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram, Abe expressed hope that bilateral cooperation in developing India’s high-speed railway system and the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor will further be promoted.

The industrial corridor is a bilateral initiative agreed upon in 2006 to build a freight railway linking the two major Indian cities and industrial complexes along the rail corridor.

“The relationship between Japan and India is filled with potential,” Abe said at the outset of the meeting at his office.

Chidambaram expressed hope that Japan will cooperate in developing India’s infrastructure by utilizing Japanese technologies and that more Japanese companies will set up local operations.

In a news conference earlier Monday, the Indian minister said his country supports former Vice Finance Minister for International Affairs Takehiko Nakao becoming the next president of the Asian Development Bank.

Asked what India wants the ADB to do under its new leadership, Chidambaram said at the Japan National Press Club in Tokyo that the bank “must lend more to the developing countries especially for infrastructure and sustainable development.”