New JICA president visits Thai premier; more development discussions on the table

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BANGKOK, Nov 30 – The new president of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) paid a courtesy call on the Thai prime minister on Friday, discussing additional development cooperation between Thailand and Japan.  

Akihiko Tanaka visited Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra at Government House.

The premier congratulated Mr Akihiko on his April promotion and praised JICA for its commitment to sustainable development in Southeast Asia. She also thanked JICA for its long-term partnership with Thailand.

The discussion included expansion of cooperation between Thailand and JICA at tripartite and regional levels.

JICA agreed to the Thai premier’s request for Japan to share its expertise and experience on community development and infrastructure at train stations and nearby areas, as well as for Japanese technology transfer to develop personnel to support various industries, according to the official statement from the Thai government.

Likewise Thailand agreed to JICA’s request for cooperation on care of the elderly and the underprivileged. It was agreed to jointly study and prepare a format for cooperation.

JICA asked Thailand to support the Japanese private sector as bidders in Thailand’s water management projects. Ms Yingluck said her administration will consider the matter fairly.

Meanwhile, JICA showed interest in becoming a partner in the Thai-Myanmar cooperation on the Dawei megaproject, which Thailand and Myanmar would provide opportunities to other countries to join the project’s development once settling their conditions.

At a tripartite level, Thailand and Japan cooperate in developing third countries, particularly in Africa as well as Myanmar.

JICA proposed development in Myanmar in three main issues — development of the country’s potential, infrastructure development, and reconciliation among ethnic minorities.