MANILA – Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. signed and exchanged notes with Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koshikawa Kazuhiko for the 710 million yen grant aid programs for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).
The grant aids from the government of Japan will provide better health services to the residents of BARMM and enhanced operations for PCG.
The Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA) under the Economic and Social Development Programme for the BARMM is a provision of 500 million yen (PHP 289.6 million) of medical equipment for hospitals within the BARMM. These health equipment include dialysis machines, oxygen pipeline systems, ICU beds, biosafety cabinets, fully functional operation room including lighting, and tables.
“Japan believes this equipment will boost the quality of health services, giving people greater chances of leading healthier, comfortable, and fulfilled lives,” Kosihakawa said in a speech.
The 10 beneficiary hospitals are Iranun District Hospital, Maguindanao Provincial Hospital, Sulu Provincial Hospital, Cotabato Regional Medical Center, Amai Pakpak Medical Center, Datu Blah Sinsuat Memorial Hospital, Tamparan District Hospital, Dr. Serapio Montaner Memorial Hospital, Datu Halun Sakilan Hospital, and Lamitan District Hospital.
The second grant aid worth 210 million yen (PHP85.67 million) involves the procurement of 13 portable generators to enhance the operation and maintenance capabilities of PCG for its patrol vessels and will be distributed in various ports around the country.
These generators will support the shore power supply requirements of the country’s vessels including the ten (10) 44-Meter Multi-Role Response Vessels or MRRVs which were procured and delivered under the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project Phase I partnership of the Philippines and Japan.
“Japan’s provision of medical equipment for 10 hospitals within the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and 13 portable generators for the Philippine Coast Guard demonstrates Japan’s commitment to help uplift the lives of the Filipino people and enhance the country’s maritime enforcement capabilities,” Locsin said.
Japan is the Philippines’ top ODA partner, with its long history of support for Philippine development priorities spanning infrastructure, health, human resources, agriculture, education, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, among many others. - Len Armea
(Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin, Jr. (left) and Japanese Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa (right) during the exchange of diplomatic notes on June 9, 2022. DFA-OPCD Photo by Philip Fernandez)