• Monday, Jan 27, 2020
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Jica to continue strong support for Bangladesh

  • Published at 12:07 am September 21st, 2019

It hopes to make Moheshkhali-Matarbari area an energy and power hub

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has vowed to continue its strong support to Bangladesh in the infrastructure, and social development sectors.

Jica sees its relations with Bangladesh in the next five years as “extremely important,” as it is helping Bangladesh reach the next level of development with the completion of a number of mega projects, says a senior official at the Jica headquarters on Thursday.

“Jica will continue its strong support towards infrastructure and social development sectors,” Director of Jica South Asia Division Takahashi Akito said at his office in Tokyo.

Explaining the importance of the next five years in the Bangladesh-Japan relations, Akito mentioned the Vision 2021 target of Bangladesh, the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh-Japan diplomatic relations in 2022, 50 years anniversary of Jica volunteers in 2023, opening of Matarbari port, and Matarbari coal-fired power project and other mega projects, including the opening of the much-hyped metro rail service.

The Jica official is currently assigned with Bangladesh affairs in Tokyo.

Responding to a question, the official said Bangladesh is strategically located in a very important place, and connectivity plays an important role. “We’re supporting to further strengthen the connectivity in the region.”

Support for integrated development

They hope to provide support for integrated development of Moheshkhali-Matarbari area to make it an energy and power hub in the region, he added.

“Moheshkhali-Matarbari, is the core area of Big-B (the Bay of Bengal Industrial Growth Belt), and initiatives will consist of logistics, power, energy, and waterfront industry hub,” said the official.

“There are some challenges ahead for Bangladesh that need to be addressed to continue the growth trend and making the growth sustainable,” the official said.

In order to further promote Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), it is essential that Bangladesh creates an appropriate environment for foreign companies. “Human development-boosting capacity will contribute to the need, and the greater growth of the country,” said the Jica official. 

He appreciated Bangladesh government’s efforts, saying that almost all the projects are linked with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). “I hope your country will be successful, and Jica will continue supporting Bangladesh to achieve such goals.”

Rohingya Issue

As an international organization, the Jica official said, they are closely watching the Rohingya situation in Bangladesh. “We should provide appropriate, and quick support to the refugee crisis, through the ongoing projects.”

He said Jica and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has constructed a deep borehole with the capacity of supplying safe water to nearly 30,000 Rohingyas at Kutupalong camp. 

Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1million Rohingyas, and most of them have entered Bangladesh since August 25, 2017.