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President Kitaoka held an online meeting with Professor Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University

May 13, 2020

JICA President KITAOKA Shinichi had an online meeting with Professor Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University on May 13.

At the beginning, President Kitaoka explained the current situation of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection in Japan and the government's countermeasures. Professor Sachs expressed concern about the serious and unstable situation in developed countries such as the United States and the regions such as Africa, Latin America, and South Asia. He noted that the situations in East Asia and ASEAN regions were relatively stable, and that the rigorous socioeconomic recovery of these regions was important for the entire world.

President Kitaoka emphasized that the current COVID-19 crisis could be a critical turning point in history, and pointed out that the establishment of a new regime for international cooperation would be indispensable in the "post-corona" world. He explained the idea of starting the research project on "international cooperation in the post-corona world" in collaboration with the experts and intellectuals both inside and outside Japan in order to grasp the ramification of this crisis and to pursue the most effective way of international cooperation. Responding to the President Kitaoka's call for participation, Professor Sachs expressed his willingness to participate in this project.

President Kitaoka and Professor Sachs also exchanged views on the prospects of globalization in the "post-corona world," desirable roles of the great powers such as China and the United States, and the future of development cooperation organizations. Professor Sachs pointed out that development cooperation as conducted by JICA would become even more important. In answering the question from Professor Sachs about the possibility of cooperation between Japan and China in the health sector, President Kitaoka said that he would like to pay close attention whether China's foreign policy in this field would gain the trust of developing countries.

JICA will continuously endeavour to minimize the damage of COVID-19 in developing countries, while making every possible effort to ensure the safety of all stakeholders, and will continue to seek the relevant international cooperation in the "post-corona world."