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Press Release

November 10, 2020

JICA sees Filipino scholars sent to Japan as change makers in post COVID-19 economic recovery

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is continuing its human resource development program with the Philippines that aims to train Filipino professionals in fields such as public policy and finance, among others.

JICA announced this as eight (8) Filipino scholars recently returned from their studies in Japan under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Global Leadership Program. These were Mark Jhuden Dela Cruz, Jason Yrvin Sol Establecida, Justin Simon, Megan Barte, Franz Raphael Raña, and Mayril Arciaga from the Department of Finance (DOF) and Vanessa Candido and Rodolfo Serrano Jr. from the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

"The past few months have been quite challenging with the pandemic taking its toll on many economies all over the world," said JICA Philippines Chief Representative AZUKIZAWA Eigo. "Hopefully, our trusted partnership with the Philippines in developing human resources will continue to yield positive results in helping Filipino professionals address COVID-19 challenges and other development issues and promote mutual understanding and friendship between Japan and the Philippines."

JICA has been sending Filipino scholars for training in Japanese universities and organizations under its Knowledge Co-Creation Program or KCCP.

The JICA KCCP program has different focus areas: Group and Region Focus based on common sectoral issues of partner countries; Country Focus or a one-year or less than one-year training of participants from a specific country; and Young Leaders where young professionals learn knowledge and technological expertise from Japan.

There are also long-term courses such as the SDGs Global Leadership Program that includes master's and Ph.D. scholarships for individuals in target government agencies. The program seeks to foster young civil servants who will influence policy-making processes in their countries and promote cooperation for sustainable development in the near future.

"As employment situations change because of COVID-19, JICA KCCP will continue to support the Philippines' human resource development activities so these professionals become agents of change in the Philippines' socioeconomic development," said Azukizawa.

JICA scholar Vanessa Candido, who completed her master's degree in Public Policy at the University of Tokyo, said, "Studying in Japan opened me to a lot of opportunities that helped me grow professionally and personally. After graduating, I am now better equipped at being a public policy practitioner and am now more than ever, ready to contribute to Philippine development."

Candido is currently an Economic Development Specialist at NEDA and is working on the formulation of policies, plans, and programs for the Philippine industry sector. "I learned about Japan's development process, Official Development Assistance (ODA) policy, and best practices which the rest of the world can recreate and fit according to their system," she added.

For more information on JICA SDGs Global Leadership Program, please visit this link:
https://www.jica.go.jp/jica-dsp/english/cource/content/sdgs_global_leader.html

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