JICA celebrates 50 years of its partnership with Bangladesh

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has celebrated 50 years of its continuous partnership with Bangladesh as the development agency has supported a lot towards the country’s socio-economic development over the last five decades.

In this regard, the JICA organised an event at a city hotel on Monday evening to commemorate the milestone of 50 years of partnership with Bangladesh, said a press release.

JICA’s partnership journey has highlighted strong bilateral relationships, important projects and continued commitment to contribute to Bangladesh’s socio-economic development.

Japan is Bangladesh’s largest bilateral development partner. This partnership has been further deepened and strengthened over the past five decades through JICA.

The institution has played an important role in making Bangladesh’s vision of development a reality. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal was present at the event as the chief guest.

Ambassador of Japan to Bangladesh IWAMA Kiminori was present as guest of honour. Besides, ITO Teruyuki, Director General of South Asia Department of JICA Headquarters and Sharifa Khan, Senior Secretary of the Economic Relations Division (ERD) were present as special guests at the event.

Along with other guests, Chief Representative of JICA Bangladesh Office Ichiguchi Tomohide was also present.

JICA has so far provided 3,285 billion Japanese yen (about $22 billion) as official development assistance (ODA) to Bangladesh alongside 144 billion Japanese yen ($965 million) as grant aid until 2022, technical cooperation up to 104 billion Japanese yen ($699 million) and 25 billion Japanese yen (about $166 million) for private sector investment finance in the form of loans and equity so far.

The organization has also provided training and education to more than 14,000 government staffs and deployed 1,286 Japanese Overseas Cooperation Volunteers in the country.

Speaking on the occasion, the finance minister said that Japan is a role model for the whole world including Bangladesh. “The flourish and development of our community will take place through the cooperation of JICA and Japan. Japan is our tested friend. We’re hopeful that this partnership will help us achieve our country’s goals,” he said.

Emphasizing on the outstanding friendship between Bangladesh and Japan, JICA chief representative Ichiguchi Tomohide said, “Through this journey of 50 years, JICA has extended cooperation to Bangladesh in the forms of technical cooperation, concessional loans, grant aid, voluntary and various forms of cooperation in many sectors.”

Highlighting the important projects completed with JICA’s cooperation in the country, ITO Teruyuki, Director General of South Asia Department of JICA said, “JICA has provided more than 3 trillion Japanese yen in support to Bangladesh which is worth more than $20 billion. Bangladesh is now one of our top three loan recipient countries worldwide.”

Senior Secretary of ERD Sharifa Khan said, “Japan’s cooperation has reached to all areas of Bangladesh over the last 50 years. Japan has participation in all 15 sectors of the country. Currently, Japan is the largest bilateral development partner of Bangladesh. JICA is very positive and cooperative in taking new initiatives for the development of the country.”

Sharifa also said the government of Bangladesh is grateful to the Japanese government for all the support it has extended over the last 50 years.

Notable development projects that have created long-term positive impacts in Bangladesh with Japanese support include Maheshkhali-Matarbari Integrated Infrastructure Development Initiative with Matarbari Deep Sea Port, Dhaka Mass Rapid Transit Development Project for three Dhaka Metro lines, Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport Expansion Project, 2nd Kanchpur, Meghna and Gomoti Bridge Construction Project, Bangladesh Special Economic Zone Project at Araihazar and Bridges Rehabilitation and Construction Projects.

JICA’s 50 years of cooperation also include education, health, agriculture and rural development, good governance, private sector development, disaster risk reduction, water supply and sanitation, solid waste management and power and energy.

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