NEW DELHI, Oct 29 - India and Japan have lauded the progress made for development of the Northeast through the India-Japan Act East Forum by identifying and implementing projects for enhancing connectivity, sustainable forest and ecological management, disaster risk reduction and people-to-people exchanges.
The two countries on Monday signed an agreement on the �North East Road Network Connectivity Improvement Project� in Tokyo for sustainable catchment forest management in Tripura (having a total loan provision of up to 316.458 billion yen).
According to a statement issued here, Prime Minister Narendra Modi recognised that the India-Japan relationship has been transformed into a partnership with great substance and purpose, and is a corner stone of India�s Act East Policy.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe underscored the basic importance of India-Japan relationship for the regional order and is determined to advancing the �new era in India-Japan relations� so as to further cooperate for peace, stability and prosperity of the Indo-Pacific region.
Based on their shared vision, the two Prime Ministers reiterated their unwavering commitment to working together towards a free and open Indo-Pacific region. The two leaders also affirmed that ASEAN unity and centrality are at the heart of the Indo-Pacific concept, which is inclusive and open to all.
Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale had earlier told newsmen that the last summit established an Act East Forum. �This is part of Prime Minister�s vision of linking the Northeast of India with ASEAN as part of our Act East Policy and of how we can leverage Japan or Japanese assistance or Japanese development capabilities in achieving this objective,� he said.
�We have had a number of meetings of the Act East Forum again in this one year and we have been able to identify some projects in the Northeast, some district roads, a couple of bridges, hydropower stations and forestry projects in two states,� he said.