MANILA, Philippines - The government of Japan has committed R315 million worth of Official Development Assistance (ODA) for the restoration of disaster-affected areas in the Philippines as well as for disaster prevention measures.
This as Japanese Ambassador Toshinao Urabe and the Philippines' Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Albert Del Rosario ex¬changed notes for the "Non-project Grant Aid for the Restoration and Disaster Prevention" amounting to ¥600 million (approximately R315 million) last Friday.
Specifically, the project is meant for the recovery of areas in Philippines that was damaged by typhoons in the last quarter of 2011. This cov¬ers the rehabilitation of infrastructures such as roads, houses, public facilities and farmland, as well as for the establishment of disaster-prevention schemes in the country.
Japan has supported the Philippines' recovery efforts by providing ¥25 million worth of emergency relief goods and $2 million to the country in the aftermath of storm Sendong.
"Regrettably, the recovery is still not enough as there is a need to restore the foundations of the affected people's lives from a long-term standpoint. In addition, there is a need to establish solid disaster-prevention schemes to prevent and mitigate the damage from natural disasters in the future," the Embassy of Japan said in statement.
Through this project, Japan will provide funds for the purchase of necessary products for the recovery and disaster-prevention policies that would be implemented by the Philip¬pines.
"The details of the products to be purchased will be decided based on the consultation between the Gov¬ernments of Japan and of the Philip¬pines," the Embassy said.
Among the probable products to be purchased are products for "stabilization of the affected people's lives" such as animal feeds, shelter units for the homeless and equip¬ments relating to disaster preven¬tion. These may include an aerial camera system for gathering disas¬ter information, dredgers for river¬bank reinforcement and disaster information sharing system.
This project is in line with the financial assistance that the Government of Japan announced in December 2009, aiming to acceler¬ate the measures implemented by developing countries to combat climate change.
Philippine economic growth in the first quarter slowed to a three-year low of 5.2 percent, well below forecasts, due to lethargic government spending and weak exports, officials said Thursday. "While growth in the private sector remains robust, the slower than programmed pace of public spending, particularly the decline in public construction, has slowed down the overall growth of the economy," Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan told reporters. "Exports were the other source of the …