My name is Mitsuyoshi KAWASAKI(Mr.) and starting July 2022,I will be joining JICA Jamaica as the new Resident Representative.
Since JICA's cooperation with Jamaica began in 1977, more than 650 Knowledge Co-Creation Program (KCCP) participants acquired knowledge and skills in various fields in Japan and about 500 Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCVs) have been dispatched in Jamaica. They helped foster trust and built deep connections between Jamaica and Japan. Through technical cooperation, concessional ODA loans and grant aids, I believe that we can learn lots of tacit and explicit knowledge from our past experiences (including the bonds that have been formed between the relevant parties of both countries) that will indicate the future direction of cooperation between the two countries. I have a lot to learn from the "steps" of our predecessors have taken, in both Jamaica and Japan.
In regard with development issues in Jamaica, it seems to me that Vision 2030 Jamaica, which Jamaica formulated and has rolled out in 2009, is a gem and a key to understanding the development issues that this country faces. The creation of this vision itself is a wonderful thing, but I am deeply impressed by the fact that we have been practicing various business developments based on this vision while repeating evaluation and making revisions and improvements.
Jamaica is celebrating its 60th anniversary of independence in 2022. In the last 60 years, Japan has established diplomatic relationship with Jamaica in 1964, JICA base in 1989, and Embassy of Japan in 1995. In 2015, at the bilateral summit meeting held in Jamaica, the Joint Statement on Strengthening the Japan-Jamaica Partnership (J-J Partnership) was announced, showing strong commitment to work closely with CARICOM member countries as well as J-J cooperation to overcome the vulnerability of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS). JICA will extend cooperation in the two priority areas of "Environment and Disaster Risk Management" and "Disparity Reduction" by bringing together domestic and foreign resources in both the "soft" and "hard" aspects.
As the impact of the novel coronavirus continues and Russia's invasion of Ukraine causes various economic hardships in every corner of the world, I hope to be able to develop cooperation to improve human security while respecting the strong commitment of Jamaica, the linchpin of Caribbean regional integration. It would make me happy if you can spur me to work harder for betterment of both countries. Thank you very much indeed.
KAWASAKI Mitsuyoshi, Resident Representative
JICA Jamaica Office