February 22, 2011
Mr. Sibtain Fazal Halim, Secretary Economic Affairs Division of Pakistan is exchanging copies of loan agreement with Madam Sadako Ogata, President of JICA at the loan signing ceremony in Tokyo, Japan. H.E Asif Ali Zardari, President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan and H.E Noato Kan, Prime Minister of Japan is also present.
Tokyo, February 22: Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will extend a soft loan worth 14.7 billion Yen (Approx 14.90 billion PKR) to the Government of Pakistan for the "Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Emergency Rural Road Rehabilitation Project". An ODA Loan agreement to this effect was signed here today at Tokyo between Madam Sadako Ogata, President of JICA and Mr. Sibtain Fazal Halim, Secretary Economic Affairs Division of Pakistan. H.E Asif Ali Zardari, President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan and H.E Noato Kan, Prime Minister of Japan witnessed the signing ceremony. The funds for the project will be released after obtaining the legal opinion of Pakistan's Federal Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs. The project will address early restoration from the flood disaster which has brought serious damages throughout the country in the recent months. With another Japanese ODA loan agreement up to 5 billion Yen for "Emergency Import Support Loan", signed on January 21, 2011, the Japanese ODA loans of total 19.7 billion Yen will be extended to flood disaster restoration activities in Pakistan. Both ODA Loans are extended on soft terms with interest rate of 0.01 percent and repayment period of 40 years including grace period of 10 years.
In 2010, Pakistan witnessed the worst floods of its history after its birth in 1947. The floods submerged one-fifth of the country, claming 2,060 lives, rendering hundreds of thousand injured and homeless, washed away roads and bridges, destroyed standing crops and resulted in outbreak of deadly diseases inviting immediate attention and response. The Province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa amongst the other provinces of the country faced the colossal damage at the hands of the merciless flood waters.
As a leading bilateral donor for Pakistan, JICA participated in the Damage and Needs Assessment (DNA) for the 2010 Pakistan floods, which was led by World Bank and Asian Development Bank. According to the DNA, while the total damages are estimated at more than 10 billion US dollars (around 820 billion yen), the medium and long-term reconstruction cost is estimated at about 8.9 billion US dollars (around 730 billion yen). The international community's support has been strongly requested to assist such reconstruction activities. As a result of discussions with government of Pakistan, JICA identified two assistance projects, namely "Emergency Import Support Loan" for budgetary support; and "Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Emergency Rural Road Rehabilitation Project" for the restoration of flood damaged roads in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
With signing of this loan agreement, the pledges of USD500 million made by the government of Japan in Pakistan Development Forum held in November 2010 stands fulfilled. The funds will be released by the government of Japan through JICA and United Nations Agencies.