Japan to chip in Y600B for PH economic development plan

TOKYO, Japan — Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio said that Japan would provide public-private assistance worth Y600 billion in support of the Marcos administration's Philippine Development Plan (PDP).

Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio greets members of the Philippine delegation for President Marcos' official working visit to Japan, at the Prime Minister's Office in Tokyo, Japan. Feb. 9, 2023.

Kishida announced this following his bilateral meeting with President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr., wherein they discussed and "strongly reaffirmed" bilateral cooperation on economy, security and defense, and people-to-people exchange.

During their joint press occasion at the Prime Minister's Office here on Thursday, Feb. 9, the Japanese leader revealed that Japan would support the PDP as it would also be beneficial to Japan.

" will be a big economic opportunity for both of our countries to support the Economic Development Plan of the Philippines to become an upper-middle-income country (UMIC) and conveyed that by March 2024, public-private assistance of Y600 billion will be provided," he said.

As a part of it, both countries exchanged notes on rail development. This is part of the seven key agreements signed during Marcos' trip.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Prime Minister Kishida, during the meeting, underscored the intention of the Japanese Government "to render dynamic support" for the Philippines to attain UMIC status by 2025 through the active contribution of Official Development Assistance (ODA) and private sector investment.

"The leaders reaffirmed their distinct, continued commitment to facilitating the steady implementation of ongoing and future economic cooperation projects through the High-Level Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation toward the Philippines' attainment of UMIC status and beyond," it said.

During the press event in Tokyo, President Marcos said he and the Japanese leader had a "deeply engaging bilateral meeting" covering the full range of Philippines-Japan bilateral relations.

"After our meeting, I can confidently say that our Strategic Partnership is stronger than ever as we navigate, together, the rough waters buffeting our region," he said.

"The future of our relationship remains full of promise as we continue to deepen and expand our engagements across a wide range of mutually beneficial cooperation," he added.