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Message from the Chief Representative

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In 1936, the first group of Japanese immigrants arrived to Paraguay. Since then, more than 80 years have passed and currently more than 7,000 Japanese immigrants and their descendants are living in this country, to which the Paraguayan society attributes the recognition and contribution to the development of the country, especially in the sector of agriculture. In addition to the above mentioned, and along with the economic cooperation of the Official Development Assistance (ODA) of Japan which began on the 70s, Paraguay is one of the most friendly countries among the Latin American countries.

The Paraguayan productive activity is mainly based on agriculture, and Paraguay keeps the first positions in the ranking of countries exporting soybeans and beef. However, its economy is relatively unbalanced and vulnerable because the production of agricultural crops is highly influenced by weather conditions and fluctuations of international prices. Therefore, it is essential to ensure a stable agricultural productivity focused on the export of products with high international competitiveness. Also, there is still a significant gap between the rich and the poor, especially in rural areas making it necessary to create employment opportunities and improve incomes through rural development.

On the other hand, in recent years, the Paraguayan government has been promoting strong measures to attract foreign investment through tax incentives, low-cost of labor, abundant electricity, and other comparative advantages. In this context, many foreign companies, including Japanese ones (auto parts, barge construction, food processing, etc.) have settled in the country, gradually transforming the traditional economic structure based on agriculture. To continue promoting this type of investment of the private sector, it is necessary and essential to improve the scope of investment and business environment in Hardware and Software aspects.

With the commitment to continue cooperating in the most effective way for the development of Paraguay, which has managed to maintain a higher economic growth rate in recent years among the Latin American countries, this Agency will take full advantage of the available cooperation schemes to the country, including Loans, Technical Cooperation, Grants, in addition to the Volunteers Program, Partnership Program and Association with Private Sector, with a multifaceted and systematic approach to implement the cooperation activities in Paraguay.

YONEZAKI Norio
Chief Representative
JICA Paraguay Office

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