EVs, energy, tech feature in PM Modi’s meetings with Japanese business leaders


NEW DELHI: Enhancing the participation and investments of Japanese firms in areas, ranging from energy to electric vehicles and textiles, figured in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s meetings with some of Japan’s top business leaders on Monday.

On the first day of his two-day visit to Tokyo, Modi met Softbank Corporation founder Masayoshi Son, Suzuki Motor Corporation’s senior advisor Osamu Suzuki, Fast Retailing Co Ltd CEO Tadashi Yanai and NEC Corporation chairman Nobuhiro Endo.

Modi appreciated Softbank’s role in India’s start-up sector and discussed with Son the firm’s future participation in key areas such as technology, energy and finance.

They also discussed reforms being undertaken by India for the ease of doing business, and specific proposals were shared with Softbank regarding enhancing its investments in India, the external affairs ministry said.

In his meeting with Suzuki, Modi discussed investment opportunities in India, including setting up production facilities for electric vehicles and batteries, and recycling centres to realise the goal of sustainable growth. They also discussed strategies for building the local innovation system in India, including skill development through Japan-India Institutes of Manufacturing and Japanese Endowed Courses.

Modi recalled Suzuki’s contributions in India and appreciated the “transformational role” of Suzuki Motors in India’s automotive industry. They appreciated that Suzuki Motor Gujarat Pvt Ltd and Maruti Suzuki India Ltd were among applicants approved under the Production Linked Incentives (PLI) scheme in the automobile and auto component sector.

In his meeting with Yanai, the chairman of Fast Retailing (the parent company of Uniqlo), Modi invited the firm to enhance its participation in India’s efforts to become a manufacturing hub for textiles, particularly the use of technologies in this sector. Modi also invited Uniqlo to take part in the PM-Mitra scheme, which is aimed at strengthening the textiles sector.

Modi and Yanai discussed India’s rapidly growing textile and apparel market, and investment opportunities under the PLI scheme for textile projects. They also discussed reforms to enable ease of doing business for foreign investors, including in industrial development, infrastructure, taxation and labour.

In his meeting with Endo, Modi appreciated NEC’s role in India’s telecommunications sector, especially in undertaking the Chennai-Andaman and Nicobar Islands (CANI) and Kochi-Lakshadweep Islands (KLI) optical fibre cable projects. The Prime Minister highlighted investment opportunities under the PLI scheme, and they too discussed opportunities in India in new and emerging technologies.

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