AS Prime Minister Manmohan Singh embarks on a bilateral visit to Japan on Tuesday, New Delhi said it attached “great priority” to its relations with Tokyo.
From Tokyo, Singh will be flying to Beijing to attend the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). This is the first time that the country's head of government will take part in the summit.
Singh will hold talks with his Japanese counterpart Taro Aso. The two countries have been discussing the development of a Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor and about developing a ‘green field’ Indian Institute of Technology (IIT).
“We hope PM’s visit to Japan will give our ties further fillip,” Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon said.
An Indian business delegation, headed by industrialist, Mukesh Ambani is accompanying the PM. Industry leaders from both sides will be meeting to chart out plans to boost bilateral trade.
“Last year, we had laid out a roadmap for strategic and global partnership.... and we look forward to carrying on discussions,” Menon said.
Singh will call on Japanese Emperor Akihito during his three-day visit.
From Japan, Singh will head for China to attend the 7th ASEM Summit to be held from October 24 to25.
Asked if Singh would be meeting Pakistani Prime Minsiter, Yousuf Raza Gilani, N Ravi, Secretary (East) Ministry of External Affairs said requests for bilateral meetings have been received but a final decision on them was yet to be taken. Singh would, however, be meeting with the Chinese leadership.