BENGALURU: “Despite India and Japan having good bilateral ties, Indian students studying in Japan, or vice versa is far less compared to other countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, China or USA,” said Nishi Ryuhei, first secretary, science and technology, Embassy of Japan, India. He was speaking at the India Japan Science Technology Innovation Forum, co-organised by Centre for Society and Policy (CSP) and Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru on Friday. Ryuhei explained that Japan has been extending official development assistance (ODA) to India since 1958, and has been its largest bilateral donor. Our country receives 3,992 million USD external assistance every year, of which, 41% is aided by Japan.
It was noted that if both countries manage to take risks, invest more in people-to-people exchange, and in science and technology, they can strengthen their relations and further accelerate their partnership.
Breaking the myth of needing to learn Japanese, Ryuhei said, “You don’t need to know the Japanese language. There are many programmes offering degrees in English. There are 114 undergraduate courses and 1,119 graduate courses offered in Japan. The tuition fees per year also ranges between Rs 3 lakh to Rs 6.3 lakh,” he added.
Jun Marai, a professor at Keio University, popularly known as ‘father of internet in Japan’ also addressed the press conference via a recorded message. Both India and Japan are taking similar efforts to digitise their country beyond just commercially progressive cities. The Covid pandemic resulted in technological advancement was released, which focused mainly on healthcare and education.
A policy note between the countries - “Flourishing through Societal Change India Japan Science Technology Innovations” was released addressing critical areas such as healthcare, education, disaster management, sustainable energy, and recommendations drawn from extensive analysis highlighting the transformative possibilities in this strategic relationship.