Three years have passed since I became the president of JICA. During this period, we have seen events around the globe that drastically changed the world order. These include Great Britain's decision to leave the European Union, the election of U.S. President Donald Trump and the rise of other assertive national leaders. The liberal international order as we have known it since the end of World War II is now standing at a critical juncture.
On the other hand, problems such as regional conflict, religious extremism, extreme poverty, disparities, worsening refugee situations, infectious diseases and natural disasters are threatening the lives and dignity of people around the world. For Japan, it is critical to keep peace, stability and prosperity of the world. These are the core elements of Japan's national interest, and that is why international cooperation is essential for Japan to its very existence.
In this sense, initiatives to realize the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed upon at the United Nations Summit 2015 represent a rare opportunity for Japan to demonstrate its presence and leadership in the international community and to improve the international cooperation system. To that extent, JICA has a heavy responsibility as Japan's development cooperation agency, and JICA intends to work proactively with a range of domestic and international partners on international cooperation aimed at realizing a world in which no one is left behind.
Taking human security and quality growth as its missions, JICA makes a point of always respecting partner countries by putting ourselves in our partners' shoes and thinking with them as equal partners. Under its vision of "Leading the world with trust," JICA aims to create a world where all people and countries are bound together by trust. At the same time, it is essential for both recipient countries and Japan to get benefit of the growth and development through their international cooperation. If Japan can contribute to reduce poverty and grow the world economy with using its experience and expertise, the world will better recognize Japan's contribution to the international community. JICA will keep such endeavor in collaboration with various actors, including the Japanese government, local governments, private companies, civil society, universities and research institutes.
Among those partnerships, JICA is particularly emphasizing JICA Development Studies Program. Japan is the first example of a non-western nation becoming a developed country, and having maintained both tradition and modernity and created a free, abundant, democratic state. I believe it is one of the best models for the advancement of developing countries. Moreover, Japan's ODA has significantly contributed to the advancement of developing countries, mainly in East Asia. Because of this experience and expertise, Japan can be the world's leading country in development studies. Under JICA Development Studies Program, we invite young leaders of developing countries to Japan, who will lead the advancement of their home countries. In partnership with Japanese universities, we provide them with an opportunity to learn about Japan's modern development experience, which differs from that of Europe and the U.S., as well as about Japan's expertise as a post-war donor country.
In July 2016, seven Japanese people were killed in a terrorist attack in Dhaka, Bangladesh. They had been enthusiastically working for a development project with their passion for international cooperation. To make sure such an incident never happens again, we will continue our utmost effort to constantly review and improve safety measures, giving the highest priority to the security of all people involved in our international cooperation projects.
It has been 10 years since new JICA starts with integrated function of Japan's ODA. With the trust of the people of Japan and a responsibility toward the world, I will continue facing my work as president of JICA with a strong sense of mission. So I humbly request your continued support and encouragement.
October 1, 2018
President, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)