G20 Summit: Modi-Abe discuss connectivity, Indo-pacific, bullet train; PM to meet Trump on Friday

On the G20 summit whose presidency is currently with Japan, PM said, "Your work as G20 Chairman is appreciable and congratulatory."

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G20 Summit: Modi-Abe discuss connectivity, Indo-pacific, bullet train; PM to meet Trump on Friday
The bilateral meeting between Narendra Modi and Shinzo Abe ahead of the Group of 20 (G20) summit.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Osaka on Thursday, his first bilateral on the sidelines of the 14th G20 Summit in Japan. This is his first meeting with the Japanese Prime Minister in his second term. PM Modi thanked Japanese PM Abe for calling him and congratulating him after his election victory on 23rd May and said "Shinzo Abe was the first friend to congratulate me. I would like to thank PM Abe for this."

On the G20 summit whose presidency is currently with Japan, PM said, "Your work as G20 Chairman is appreciable and congratulatory." 

PM congratulated the people of Japan and the Japanese PM for the new Reiwa era. Reiwa era began on 1st May 2019 when Emperor Akihito's eldest son, Naruhito, ascended the throne as the 126th Emperor of Japan. President Ram Nath Kovind will represent India at the enthronement ceremony of Naruhito as emperor of Japan is 22 October 2019. Japanese Emperor Akihito abdicated the Throne on 30 April 2019.

India Japan 2+2 dialogue between Defence and Foreign Ministers will take place later this year, ahead of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's India visit later this year. The visit will be for the India Japan Annual Summit that alternates its location between India and Japan. This is the second time that India engaging with any country in this format.

During the meet, both sides discussed Connectivity, Indo Pacific. Infrastructure projects were also discussed.

"Connectivity issue was touched upon. First was Act-East Forum, both agreed on Jt. Operations in third countries like Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Myanmar. Indo Pacific is essentially a connectivity issue. The seamless connectivity of two major oceans", Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said in a press conference later. 

The bullet train project & convention center in Varanasi was also discussed.

PM arrived in Japan for a 3-day visit on Thursday morning and was received by Japanese Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Kenzi Yamada and Mayor of Osaka city at Kansai Airport. Upon his arrival, he tweeted, "Reached Osaka to join the #G20 Summit. Grateful to the dynamic Indian community for the warm welcome!".


Packed schedule for PM

Prime Minister Modi's 3-day visit is packed with 10 bilateral meetings and more than 5 pull-asides. He will be meeting US President Donald Trump on Friday. The meeting comes just one day after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met PM Modi in Delhi during his 3-day India visit.

During his meet with the Prime Minister on Wednesday, Secretary Pompeo had conveyed greetings of US President Trump to the Prime Minister and congratulated the Prime Minister on his electoral victory, according to a statement by the Indian government.

Meanwhile, the US President ahead of his meeting with PM Modi has said he will be talking about the high tariffs that India has been putting on his country.

He tweeted, "I look forward to speaking with Prime Minister Modi about the fact that India, for years having put very high Tariffs against the United States, just recently increased the Tariffs even further. This is unacceptable and the Tariffs must be withdrawn!"

It is to be noted that the US President has been very vocal about tariffs especially from India. He has been referring India as a "tariff king" and calling on India to reduce tariffs on Harley Davidson motorbikes.

On Friday, PM Modi will be meeting Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha, Vietnam PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc, South Korea president Moon Jae-in, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the first day of the 2-day G20 summit, the 6th he will be participating since 2014. The Prime Minister is posited to attend two trilateral as well, the JAI (Japan, America, India) trilateral and the RIC (Russia, India, China) trilateral.

On that day itself, he will also be present at the informal BRICS meet. 

The first meeting of JAI grouping happened in December of 2018 on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina. While RIC has been an old grouping, it was revived at heads of state/govt level only last year when leaders of all the three countries -- Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping & Indian PM Narendra Modi met on the sidelines of the G20 summit.

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