DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Philippine officials meeting with Japanese in Tokyo presented government priority projects for possible implementation under the Japan Official Development Assistance.
The Department of Budget and Management, in a dispatch Thursday said that during the first meeting of the Philippines-Japan Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation held in Tokyo, Japan this week, Filipino officials presented the priority projects including railway, irrigation and public works projects covering road and flood management.
He said the Japanese side acknowledged the list based on the Prime Minister’s commitment to provide JPY1 Trillion (about US$9 Billion) financing package to the Philippines. The priority list covers projects in railway, irrigation, and public works projects covering road and flood management.
“Additional projects in the areas of public works, energy, and industrial zone development were also submitted as candidates for Japan ODA financing,” the DBM said.
The first meeting of the Joint Committee took place at Kantei, the Prime Minister’s Office. The Philippine side was headed by the Department of Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, while the Japanese side was led by Dr. Hiroto Izumi, the special advisor to Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Other officials who were present included Senator Alan Peter Cayetano; Secretaries Ernesto Pernia of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Mark Villar of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Benjamin Diokno of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), Alfonso Cusi of the Department of Energy (DOE); Vivencio Dizon, president of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), Reuben Lista, president of the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC); Undersecretary Cesar Chavez of the Department of Transportation (DOTr); and Charge d’Affaires Eduardo Martin Meñez of the Philippine Embassy in Tokyo.
High-ranking officials of the Japan Ministries of Foreign Affairs; Finance; Economy, Trade and Industry; Land Infrastructure and Transport; Internal Affairs and Communications; Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; Health, Labor and Welfare and official funding agencies – Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) – were present at the Joint Committee Meeting.
This joint panel’s formation was announced during Prime Minister Abe’s visit last January to the Philippines, where he announced the Japanese government’s commitment of one trillion yen in development assistance and investments to the Philippines within the next five years.
The Joint Committee is set to meet next in the Philippines within the year at a date to be agreed upon by both parties.
The Philippine delegation also expressed its appreciation to Japan for presenting the Power Sector Action Plan, which was prepared with Japanese Government’s assistance. The Philippine delegation also presented to Japanese officials the Philippine Development Plan for 2017-2022 and provided updates on the country’s macroeconomic fundamentals.
The inaugural meeting of the Joint Committee follows the successful official visit of President Duterte to Japan last year and the reciprocal visit made by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the Philippines in January. (davaotoday.com)