August 14, 2013
JICA President Akihiko Tanaka held talks with key figures -- including President Thein Sein; Thura Shwe Mann, speaker of the House of Representatives; Aung San Suu Kyi, chairperson of the National League for Democracy; and representatives of ethnic minority political parties -- in Myanmar on Aug. 8-9.
Tanaka was in the capital, Nai Pyi Taw, to hold meetings and visit the sites of JICA cooperation projects.
JICA President Akihiko Tanaka, left, after finishing his talks with the president of Myanmar, to his left.
In his talks with President Thein Sein, Tanaka explained how ongoing projects such as anti-human trafficking measures and a sign language technical project are delivering steady results. He also discussed how JICA will contribute to human resource development at the Myanmar Japan Center for Human Resources Development, as well as carry out technical cooperation with Yangon Technological University and Mandalay Technological University. With regard to Japanese ODA loans, Tanaka said JICA will assist with regional development through the Regional Development Project for Poverty Reduction Phase 1, which covers the entire country of Myanmar (seven states and seven regions).
Thein Sein expressed gratitude for large-scale cooperation from Japan and hoped it will be further expanded. He said poverty reduction, regional development and infrastructure development are particularly important, and he expressed strong hope for cooperation in a variety of areas including agriculture, rural electrification, transportation, urban infrastructure and the fiscal and financial sectors.
While some projects have already shown results, Tanaka said, JICA will implement future cooperation with even greater speed and steadiness.
After talks with Aung San Suu Kyi.
In his talks with Tanaka, Shwe Mann thanked Japan for its cooperation and said the Assembly of the Union would quickly deliberate matters relating Japanese cooperation.
Meeting with Suu Kyi, Tanaka explained the objectives of JICA assistance and the details of the relevant activities. Suu Kyi and Tanaka then discussed and exchanged opinions on how JICA's cooperation could be improved. Suu Kyi showed particular interest in developing agriculture, education and health.
In discussions with representatives of ethnic minority political parties (members of the Assembly of the Union), Tanaka also explained the objectives of JICA projects and the details of relevant activities. They explained historical connections of each state with Japan and JICA's cooperation. They also expressed their hope for further cooperation from JICA in a wide range of areas such as electric power, agriculture and human resource development.
Tanaka also met with, among others, Dr. Kan Zaw, Minister of National Planning and Economic Development; Win Shein, minister of Finance; and Win Myint, minister of Commerce, and exchanged opinions with them on JICA cooperation.