Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja
Nigeria and Japan on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for an aid project on economic and social development in Nigeria worth N642 million, to be funded by the Japanese government.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma signed on behalf of the federal government while Japanâ€™s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Nigeria, Mr. Sadanobu Kusaoke, signed on behalf of his home country.
The programme aims at exploring development strategies that will enhance competitiveness and support the Nigeriaâ€™s poverty reduction efforts. It is also meant to improve standard of living and ensure environmental sustainability, which is in line with the development priorities encapsulated in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) [2017â€“2020] of the Buhari administration.
While signing the agreement, Senator Udoma said Nigeria is indeed grateful to the Government of Japan for its numerous interventions in various sectors of the countryâ€™s economy in support of its development aspirations; and particularly for aligning its intervention programmes with the ERGP.
He cited the signing last year, of an Exchange of Note (E/N) with the Government of Japan on Emergency Improvement of Electricity Supply Facilities in Abuja and commended the role Japan played in the development of the National Power Development Master-plan designed to guide government on the optimal energy mix and efficiency for the country.
The minister, according to a statement issued by his Special Adviser (Media), Mr. Akpandem James also thanked the Japanese Government for the various technical assistance programmes offered in a wide range of skill-areas by that countryâ€™s government and the implementation of other grant projects and programmes nationwide through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
â€œThe Economic and Social Development programme for which we are here gathered this morning, is also one of such interventions in the sum of Y200,000,000.00 (approximately N642,204,315.79),â€ the minister noted.
He expressed the commitment of Nigeria to working more closely with the government of Japan to achieve sustainable economic development for the country.