Introduction of New Technologies in 2013: Japan Will Work on Environmental Protection in BiH

February 9, 2013 2:23 PM

Past and current cooperation between Japan and BiH in the provision of official development (ODA) was presented on Thursday in Sarajevo in the seminar that was organized by the Japanese Agency for International Cooperation (JICA) and Office for the Balkans in cooperation with the Embassy of Japan in BiH.

JICA is the biggest bilateral agency in the world, which through ODA provides assistance to countries in the Western Balkans in three areas: strengthening peace, development of the private sector and solving environmental problems.

The Ambassador of Japan to BiH Hideo Yamakazi opened the seminar by saying that it is difficult to find a municipality in BiH that did not receive help from Japan in the last 17 years, which is how long JICA has been offering support to BiH.

‘’The consolidation of peace and ethnic reconciliation continue to be one of the key pillars of our policy to help BiH. However, there is a gradual shift in priorities to promote sustainable economic development while at the same time we protect the natural human environment’’, said Yamakazi.

To this end, he said that the Embassy of Japan is ready to help our country in the future, so we will work together with Japanese embassies in the introduction of new technologies for environmental protection.

‘’I hope that today’s seminar will provide an opportunity to learn something more about our assistance so that we can work together in the future and strengthen the cooperation of Japan and BiH”, said the Japanese Ambassador.

Thanking Japan for its years of help, the BiH Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Muharrem Zejnullahu said that the government of Japan, through its Embassy in Sarajevo and the JICA has in particular helped BiH with the realization of several hundred professional seminars in Japan for participants from BiH, as well as the implementation of dozens of projects in both entities and Brčko district.

The Resident Representative of the JICA office for the Balkans Toshiya Abe said that the JICA gives long-term loans with low interest rates to strengthen the development of the country, as well as grants with no repayment obligations.

For the 2013 fiscal year, technical support amounts to around one billion euros, credits of 7.44 billion euros and help through grants is one billion and thirty-three million euros, said Abe.

Based on its vision-inclusive and dynamic development-JICA is trying to encourage people to recognize issues and problems of development and to include them in the process of development and to stimulate their involvement.

In the first ten years of Japanese assistance there was a focus on emergency and reconstruction projects, under which 85 health centers were built, equipped with medical equipment.

Japan helped to build eleven primary schools and four bridges, and a training program in Japan was attended by 628 Bosnians-Herzegovinians so far.

Aside from technical help to Srebrenica, Japan helped with the realization of around 200 projects in local communities in the field of primary health care, education, de-mining, water supply, etc.

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