Understanding Abe’s win
Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s weekend victory gives him majority to carry out radical economic and diplomatic reforms. What could his victory mean to India?
Abe is committed to opening up inefficient and protected service and farm sectors. India Inc could be a major beneficiary. Reforms should make it easier for foreign players to enter the IT and IT-enabled services market, both dominated by the sort of customised software that is Bangalore’s forte.
India believes Abe’s control of parliament opens the door for the passage of an Indo-Japanese civil nuclear pact. This is essential: Japanese nuclear components are in every French and American reactor. Without a Japanese agreement, India’s plans to import state-of-the-art reactors will be stillborn.
Japan Inc is looking for alternatives to China as relations between these two countries deteriorate
Abe wants to wean Japan off its postwar pacificism. With parliament on his side, he can move forward on doubling Japan’s defence budget and seeking new defence partners to counter China. Abe sees India as a partner in all of this.
India’s greatest geopolitical challenge is China’s rapid rise. Delhi’s security would be best served by a multipolar Asia. A revived Japan would help counter China.