Often referring to each other as 'personal friends' in their speeches, the two dignitaries likened the kick-off of the 508 kilometre-long Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR) to the catalyst for building new India. This is reminiscent of what the Shinkansen bullet train did to Japan's economy since its launch in 1964.
"I love Gujarat and the thrilling experience of a roadshow yesterday. I hope to come back to Ahmedabad in Shinkansen with Modi. I remember in 1964 when a new Japan was born after Shinkansen's launch. Modi has now chosen the same to build a new India and we are determined to fulfil it. The first two letters of Japan and the first letter of India form the word 'Jai' that means victory and this special strategic and global partnership will achieve that," said Abe in his Japanese speech, which was being translated impromptu.
The dignitary duo also remotely launched a high-speed rail training institute at Vadodara from the venue. Before the launch, Modi and Abe were briefed about the project and shown a model of the high-speed rail corridor from Ahmedabad to Mumbai.