Foreign Policy Watch: India-Japan

G-7 Japan Summit: Consolidating Approaches for Global Challenges in the Indo-Pacific


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: G-7 Hiroshima Summit

Mains level: G-7 Hiroshima Summit, Challenges, approach and way ahead


Central idea

  • The G-7 Hiroshima Summit, hosted by Japan, marks a significant event as Japan takes the lead since the 2008 summit. For Japan, the imperative lay in navigating the complex geopolitical landscape of the Indo-Pacific, reinforcing partnerships, and addressing security risks in a region crucial for global fortunes.

G7 Summit Hiroshima

  • The 49th annual G7 Summit took place in Hiroshima. Japan hosted the summit in its capacity as the President of the G7.
  • Prime Minister Kishida’s commitment to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation was evident through the choice of Hiroshima as the host city.
  • Prime Minister Modi attended the summit at the invitation of the Japanese Prime Minister.
  • The participating leaders issued a leaders’ communiqué on the second day of the summit. The communiqué will be adopted officially at the end of the summit on the 21st.
  • Current Members: US, UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan

Challenges Facing Japan

  • Russia’s Aggression in Ukraine: Japan is deeply concerned about Russia’s ongoing aggression in Ukraine, which poses a threat to regional stability. The conflict, now more than a year old, shows little signs of abating, and Japan is actively monitoring the situation due to its potential impact on its national security strategy.
  • China’s Assertive Behavior: Japan is closely watching China’s increasing assertiveness in the region, both militarily and geopolitically. China’s military modernization plans, territorial disputes in the East China Sea and South China Sea, and growing influence pose significant challenges for Japan’s security and regional stability.
  • Military Pressures on Taiwan: Japan is alarmed by China’s growing military pressures on Taiwan, which has the potential to escalate tensions and trigger a regional conflict. Ensuring the peace and stability of Taiwan is vital for Japan’s national security interests, given its geographical proximity to the region.
  • North Korea’s Nuclear Posturing: The volatile nuclear posturing and nuclear weapons program of North Korea are major concerns for Japan’s security. North Korea’s missile tests and threats of nuclear attacks not only pose a direct threat to Japan but also contribute to regional instability.
  • Economic and Technological Resilience: Japan faces challenges in ensuring economic security, particularly in the face of global supply chain instability and the impact of sensitive technologies. Reviving and strengthening its chip industry and advancing collaborations in science and technology are crucial for Japan’s economic and technological resilience.
  • Climate Change Impacts: As an island nation, it is particularly vulnerable to the consequences of climate change, such as coastal erosion, increased flooding, and threats to food security.
  • Regulation of Sensitive Technologies: Japan faces the complex task of regulating sensitive technologies to ensure national security without stifling innovation and economic growth. Striking a balance between fostering technological advancements and safeguarding against potential risks and misuse is a challenge that Japan must navigate.

Significance of the India-Tokyo Partnership

  • Strategic Cooperation: The partnership between New Delhi and Tokyo holds significant strategic importance. As two major democracies in the Indo-Pacific region, their collaboration helps in addressing shared challenges and advancing common interests.
  • Bilateral Defense Ties: The defense cooperation between India and Japan has been growing steadily in recent years. Regular joint military exercises, information sharing, and defense technology collaboration strengthen their respective defense capabilities.
  • Economic Collaboration: India and Japan have been actively engaged in economic cooperation. Their partnership encompasses various sectors such as infrastructure development, technology, trade, and investment. Joint projects in the Indo-Pacific region promote connectivity, economic growth, and sustainable development.
  • Regional Connectivity: The collaboration between India and Japan plays a crucial role in enhancing regional connectivity. Initiatives like the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor (AAGC) and the Indo-Pacific Economic Corridor (IPEC) aim to create infrastructure linkages and promote trade and investment in the region.
  • Shared Values and Interests: India and Japan share common values of democracy, rule of law, and respect for international norms. Their partnership is built on a foundation of shared interests, including a free and open Indo-Pacific, multilateralism, and a rules-based international order.
  • Counterbalancing China’s Influence: The New Delhi-Tokyo partnership serves as a counterbalance to China’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific. Both countries share concerns about China’s assertiveness and seek to uphold a rules-based order and promote a free and open Indo-Pacific.
  • Middle Power Diplomacy: The partnership between India and Japan is an exemplar of middle power diplomacy. By joining forces, they can amplify their respective influence and promote stability and cooperation in the region. Their partnership serves as a model for other middle powers seeking to address global challenges collectively.

Way ahead: Advancing Shinzo Abe’s Legacy

  • Strengthening Alliances and Partnerships: Like Shinzo Abe, current Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida can continue to prioritize the strengthening of alliances and partnerships. This includes nurturing relationships with key allies such as the United States, Australia, and India, and expanding cooperation in various areas such as security, trade, and technology.
  • Network Building and Diplomatic Partnerships: Prime Minister Kishida can follow Shinzo Abe’s footsteps by actively engaging in network building and developing diplomatic partnerships across the world. This includes reaching out to countries in the Indo-Pacific region and beyond to foster collaboration, enhance understanding, and create a network of like-minded nations.
  • Regional Leadership in the Indo-Pacific: Japan has a crucial role to play in shaping the strategic contours of the Indo-Pacific region. Prime Minister Kishida can continue Shinzo Abe’s efforts in reinforcing Japan’s leadership position by actively engaging with regional forums and initiatives such as the Quad (Australia, India, Japan, and the U.S.), ASEAN, and the Indo-Pacific initiatives.
  • Economic Engagement and Trade Initiatives: Shinzo Abe was instrumental in advancing Japan’s economic engagement with the world through initiatives like the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Prime Minister Kishida can build upon this legacy by further promoting free trade, pursuing economic cooperation agreements, and supporting initiatives that foster economic growth and innovation.
  • Active Engagement in Global Governance: Shinzo Abe played an active role in global governance by advocating for reform in international institutions and promoting Japan’s candidacy for key positions. Prime Minister Kishida can continue this legacy by actively engaging in global forums, working towards international reforms, and contributing to the development of global norms and rules.


  • The G-7 Hiroshima Summit provided a platform for Japan to consolidate approaches in addressing pressing global challenges. Additionally, the deepening partnership between India and Japan contributes to middle-power diplomacy, upholding a rules-based order and countering unilateral attempts to alter regional dynamics. The summit reinforced Japan’s position as a crucial security actor and its willingness to actively engage in shaping the global order.

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India-Japan ties under Shinzo Abe


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