By Mahua Venkatesh
New Delhi, December 5: Nagpur based Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT) will launch a special training programme on Japanese language, work culture and communication for its students. The programme will commence in January next year. This initiative, though one of the first of its kind, is likely to be replicated at several other education institutes. The programme is expected to facilitate employment of Indians in Japanese companies while also making it easier for them to relocate there. A public university, VNIT is among the 31 National Institutes of Technology in the country.
"Japan would now look to hire a large workforce from India and this would include both blue collared and white collared. We need to have a plan in place. The initiative undertaken by VNIT will be a big step," Aditya Kumar, promoter and chairman, Kizuna, a platform connecting Indian and Japanese businesses, said.
Kumar, who is familiar with the Japanese language and culture is likely to spearhead the programme.
Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro) under the aegis of the country's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), with the aim to boost economic activities and people to people connect is running a similar programme with IIT Hyderabad.
Suzuki Takashi, Chief Director General, Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro), India told India Narrative that more such programmes are needed to increase job opportunities for citizens.
"We have a programme with IIT Hyderabad but we are now looking to have similar tie-ups with other top education institutes in India," Takashi said, adding that it is critical to increase people to people connect between the two countries especially at a time when the supply chain network is under pressure.
At present, the Indian diaspora in Japan is not a sizeable one.
Japan is currently dealing with an ageing population. A report by Japan Times published in September noted that 29.1 per cent of the country's population is over 65 years of age.
Japan tops the world rankings for the oldest society by proportion of over 65s, well above Italy in second place at 24.1 per cent and third place Finland with 23.3 per cent, the report said, adding that a rise in elderly people is a problem for the country that affects health care system and efforts to reverse low birth rates and sustain regional communities.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida paid a visit to New Delhi in March this year and thereafter Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in Tokyo to attend the QUAD summit between India, Japan, Australia and the US. The two leaders concurred to further develop Japan-India relations and work closely toward the realisation of a "Free and Open Indo-Pacific," Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.