Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe will pay a three-day official visit to India from January 25 during which he will attend the Republic Day Parade as Chief Guest and hold talks on key issues with his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh for the bilateral annual summit.
The discussions between the two Prime Ministers "will add substance and content to the India-Japan Strategic and Global Partnership", External Affairs Ministry said here today.
Abe, who will be accompanied by his wife Akie Abe, will be the first Japanese prime minister to be chief guest at India's Republic Day parade.
The visit of Abe later this month comes after the visit of Japan's Emperor and Empress to India two months ago.
Since Abe took over in December 2012 in his second term as Prime Minister, ties between India and Japan have witnessed upward swing. Prime Minister Singh had visited Japan last year for the 7th annual summit during which the two leaders extensively discussed bilateral, regional and global issues of common interest which enhanced and strengthened the Strategic and Global Partnership.
The increasing proximity between India and Japan also come against the backdrop of a spike in tensions between Japan and China over a group of disputed islands in the East China Sea.
India and Japan are also engaged in "early conclusion" of a civil nuclear cooperation pact. The talks, which were launched in 2010 had slowed down after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011, but gained momentum after the direction from the Prime Ministers of the two countries to conclude it early.
On business front, Japan-India bilateral trade reached USD 18.61 billion in 2012-13, marginally higher than USD 18.43 billion in the previous year.
The Delhi- Mumbai Industrial Corridor and the Delhi- Mumbai Rail Corridor are huge projects that are being supported by Japanese agencies, besides the potential involvement of Japan in Chennai- Bangalore Industrial Corridor project.