Fifty-three years after their trip to India as Crown Prince and Crown Princess, Japanese Emperor Akihito and his wife Empress Michiko will arrive here on a six-day visit beginning November 30 with an aim to further strengthening bilateral ties.

This will be the first time of an Emperor and Empress of Japan to India.

“The visit will immeasurably expand and strengthen the India-Japan strategic and global partnership,” the Ministry of External Affairs said.

The Monarch and his wife had visited India as Crown Prince and Crown Princess in 1960.

The Royal couple will be in India at the invitation of President Pranab Mukherjee.

They will meet the country’s top leadership including the President and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and are likely to discuss bilateral, regional and international issues. They will also visit Chennai.

The ties between India and Japan are on the upswing.

Dr. Singh had visited Japan in May during which both sides had agreed to further enhance cooperation in diverse fields, particularly in trade and investment.

The two sides had also decided to accelerate talks on a civil nuclear deal to allow Japan to export nuclear reactors to India and to bolster maritime security cooperation.

Negotiations for the civil nuclear cooperation agreement have not made much headway since Japan was struck by Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011.

While Japan has backed the Indo-US nuclear deal and the exemptions given to India from international technology sanctions, successive governments in Tokyo have found the going was tough in garnering political support for it in the face of stiff opposition from the non-proliferation lobby.

In the financial year 2011-12, India-Japan bilateral trade reached USD 18.43 billion.

The year 2012 marked the 60th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Japan.

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