Japan helps Bolster health care in Central Burma

July 9, 2012

JAPAN – The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has signed a memorandum of understanding on equipment assistance last Friday. The agreement involves providing equipment assistance in health care in central Burma and in dam construction in the Irrawaddy Region worth US$30.24 million.

In addition, in May, JICA donated new grant aid of US$10.6 million to the resident World Food Program to provide food and nutrition assistance through a food-for-work program for nearly 350,000 people in Kachin, Karen, Rakhine and Shan states and Magway region.

Japan is one of the biggest development donors to Burma since Asian and Western countries have reengaged the country following democratic reforms and the release of significant numbers of political prisoners.

In April, Japan agreed to write off more than $3.7billion of debt owed by Burma and to resume development aid.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said, “At a time when Myanmar’s [Burma’s] democratization is reaching a key stage, Japan is declaring to further support its efforts to reform and to continue bolstering assistance.”

Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba in December 2011 told Aung San Suu Kyi, “The Japanese government would like to help and support the Burmese government’s efforts as much as it can.”

In 2011, Japan was ranked 12th in foreign investment in Burma with US$212 million.

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