Yesterday (January 6th, 2012,) the Japanese government announced their plan to export a city to Chennai suburb. They plan to initiate a public-private urban development project that includes an industrial complex, a residential area for 50,000, a shopping center, a golf course, a hospital and so on – at the Japanese quality standard.
As you may know, Japan-level quality standard is high – very high (and I personally think this extremely high demand on quality is one of the reasons for Japanese economy’s current struggle.) This will surely excite 800 Japanese expatriates in Chennai, who are having hard time adjusting themselves into the local quality standard. Currently, many of them go to Bangkok or Singapore to buy Japanese stuff, to Sri Lanka to play golf, and to Japan to see the doctor. Being able to satisfy these demands locally in Chennai will benefits the Japanese and other expats as well as the local economy.
This is just one instance of the several development initiatives that Japan plans to carry out in Chennai. Here are some more:
Pre-feasibility Study on Hyderabad-Chennai High Speed Train
Japan Railway Technical Service (JARTS), along with Indian partner, has contracted for the pre-feasibility study on the proposed high speed train route between Hyderabad and Chennai. If this plan is realized, those in Chennai can have a day trip to Hyderabad to enjoy great Biryani for lunch!
Renault-Nissan to Double its Chennai Plant Capacity by 2016
Renault-Nissan Alliance has also announced a plan to expand the production capability of their Chennai plant by double to accommodate the growing demands in both domestic and export market. Never-ending road construction in the area should have been completed by then. Today, there are three Japanese restaurants near the plant and one Asian grocery store. As Nissan continues to invest heavily in Chennai, their business will continue to grow as fast like a bullet train!
All Nippon Airways to Open Chennai-Tokyo Direct Flight
No, just kidding. As of today, there is no confirmed plan for the direct route between Chennai and Tokyo, although this is a dream of all the Chennai-based Japanese expats. Currently, the most convenient flights are one-stop via Bangkok, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, or Hong Kong. Direct flights will not only boost the people traffic but also the goods logistics like perishable items. This will surely improve and expand the Japanese cuisine in Chennai. For example, you can get Sashimi-grade tuna fish directly from Tsukiji market!