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Bengaluru, NFAPost: As part of larger cooperation in business and technology, India and Japan are going ahead with its plan to sign a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) in the field of Cybersecurity.

The move comes at a time India and Japan is engaged in cooperation in the field of information technology and manufacturing. Also, lots of leading Japanese IT companies have set up their office in India and there is a systematic engagement with Indian startup ecosystem.

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister, has given the green signal for signing the MoC between India and Japan. It should be noted in the context of Nasscom’s concerted efforts to widen engagement with Japanese government by organising events in their country for enhancing the visibility for Indian IT companies.

According to official sources, the finalisation of the text of the cybersecurity agreement that will promote cooperation in key areas such as 5G network and Artificial Intelligence was welcomed by both the countries. The announcement on the agreement was followed by the 13th India-Japan Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue between the representative ministers.

Critical infrastructure

The MoC enhances cooperation in areas of mutual interest, which include inter-alia, capacity building in the area of cyberspace; protection of critical infrastructure; cooperation in emerging technologies; sharing information on cyber security threats/incidents and malicious cyber activities, as well as best prac­tices to counter them; Developing joint mechanisms for practical cooperation to mitigate cyber threats to the security of Information Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure etc.

India and Japan commit to an open, interoperable, free, fair, secure and reliable cyberspace environment and to promote the Internet as an engine of innova­tion, economic growth, and trade and commerce that would be consistent with their respective domestic laws and international obligations, and with their wide-ranging strategic partnership.

Both sides, through the MoC, affirm cooperation in the international arena including in the United Nations; Discussing and sharing strategies and best prac­tices to promote the integrity of the supply chain of ICT products; Strengthening the security of ICT infrastructure through Government-to-Government and Business-to-Business cooperation; Continuing dialogue and engagement in Internet governance fora, and to support active participation by all the stakeholders of the two countries in these fora.

Human resources

Economic relations between India and Japan have vast potential for growth, given the obvious complementarities that exist between the two Asian economies. Japan’s interest in India is increasing due to variety of reasons including India’s big and growing market and its resources, especially the human resources.

The signing of the historic India-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) and its implementation from August 2011 has accelerated economic and commercial relations between the two countries. During the visit of Prime Minister Modi to Japan in September 2014, PM Shinzo Abe pledged $35 billion in investment in India’s public and private sectors over the next five years as well as to double the number of Japanese companies operating in India.

Japan bilateral trade with India totaled to $ 17.63 billion during FY 2018-19. Exports from Japan to India during this period were $ 12.77 billion and imports were US$ 4.86 billion. Japan’s exports to India were 2.48% of India’s total imports and India’s exports to Japan were 1.47% of India’s total exports. This underlines that there remains a big potential.

An “India-Japan Digital Partnership” (I-JDP) was launched during the visit of PM Modi to Japan in October 2018, furthering existing areas of cooperation as well as new initiatives within the scope of cooperation in S&T/ICT, focusing more on “Digital ICT Technologies”.

Indian startup

This also incorporates setting up “Start-up Hub” between India and Japan. MeitY will be nodal agency to implement it from Indian side with Ministry of Communications (MoC), DIPP, NITI Aayog & other stakeholders and METI from Japanese side with MEXT and MIC & other stakeholders from Japanese side.

First Startup Hub was established in Bangaluru by JETRO to identify select Indian start-ups for Japanese market and for potential Japanese investors. Thereafter, Startup-India (under Invest India) and Japan Innovation Network (JIN) signed an MoU on innovation collaboration with a focus on SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) connecting two start-up eco-systems in June 2018.

Invest India also launched an on-line portal for the Start-up hub. Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal attended the G20 Ministerial Meeting on Trade and Digital Economy on 8-9 June 2019 in Tsukuba and participated in discussions relating to increasing trade and cooperation to harness the potential of digital economy. On the sidelines, he held a bilateral meeting with METI Minister Hiroshige Seko on India-Japan bilateral cooperation in trade and investment.

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