Japan to strengthen development partnerships with UNDP

30 Nov 2009

25 November 2009 -- The Government of Japan and the United Nations Development Programme agreed to intensify cooperation for peace-building in Afghanistan and Pakistan during UNDP Administer Helen Clark’s visit to Japan from 24 to 25 November 2009. 

During a two-day stay in Japan, Miss Clark had meetings with Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, Finance Minister Hirohisa Fujii and Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada. In the meeting with Prime Minister Hatoyama, UNDP and Japan agreed to extend their partnership to achieve the Millenium Development Goals and peace-building.  The Foreign Minister and Miss Clark  agreed on pressing issues that the Japanese government and UNDP can take concerted actions together including peace-building efforts in Afghanistan and Pakistan and cooperation for climate change adaptation.  

The Japanese government has already announced a new policy package for Afghanistan totaling $5 billion USD over the next five years with focus on support for people’s livelihoods.  The Japanese government and UNDP have worked on four major programmes in Afghanistan for law and order, election, national area-based development programme and disarmament and reintegration, and the partnership is expected to expand to other fields under the new Japanese policy. 

On climate change issues, the Japanese government provided $92.1 million USD to support climate change adaptation in 21 countries in Africa.  The Japanese government and UNDP will continue to discuss expansion of such support to other countries.  

During her stay in Japan, Miss Clark also made a speech at the ODA Special Committee of the House of Councilors.  She stressed the importance of keeping up its promise to increase, not decrease, ODA to achieve the MDGs and request Japan to take a leadership in this front.   This is her first visit to Japan since she took the office in April.

The Japanese government has made commitments to continue its efforts to achieve the MDGs.  The Administrator’s visit will be the first step to formulate new common agenda to make an impact together.