India welcomes Japan’s steps to ease visa restrictions, promote tourism

New Delhi, Jan.25,: India and Japan on Saturday noted that there is a high potential to be explored in the area of people-to-people exchanges between India and Japan and expressed their intention to make utmost effort for the expansion of exchange of peoples in various fields.

In the joint statement issued after summit-level talks held here between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the two leaders expressed their expectation to enhance cooperation between the two countries on development of human resources, and matching activities in the area of content industry.

The two sides noted Japan’s participation as a partner country in the India International Trade Fair in Delhi and the International Film Festival of India 2013 in Goa.

Prime Minister Singh appreciated Japan’s decision on relaxation of visa requirements for Indian ordinary passport holders while Prime Minister Abe welcomed India’s consideration for relaxing visa requirements for Japanese ordinary passport holders.

The two leaders stressed on the importance of continued efforts to revise the Memorandum on Simplifying Visa Procedures between the two countries, which would further enhance people-to-people exchanges in business area.

The two sides also welcomed the recent signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Ministry of Tourism of India and Japan Tourism Agency in the field of tourism and successful holding of Forum for the promotion of Public-Private cooperation on tourism in January 2014.

Prime Minister Singh acknowledged Japan’s efforts to create “a society in which all women shine”, as announced by Prime Minister Abe at the United Nations General Assembly in September last year.

They underlined the importance of promoting gender equality, women empowerment and child development. They also acknowledged the importance of Japanese language education in India and increasing mobility of students between two countries, in order to foster mutual understanding among young generation of the two countries.

In this regard, they confirmed their willingness to support the cooperation among universities and increase steadily the number of student exchanges between India and Japan in accordance with Japan’s plan to double the number of student exchanges by 2020. (ANI)