CPEC projects should be transparent, in benefit of Pakistan: Japanese envoy3 min read

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Islamabad: Ambassador of Japan Takashi Kurai has said as a long-term friend of Pakistan, Japan supports and wishes to contribute further to the development of Pakistan.

In this respect, Japan sincerely hopes that the CPEC projects are to be implemented for the benefit of Pakistan and believes at the same time that for the CPEC to be fully beneficial to Pakistan, they should be based on principles of transparency, economic viability, rule of law, following the international standards. The Japanese ambassador expressed these views while giving an exclusive interview to DNA.

He further said, Pakistan is susceptible to natural disasters. We remember well the flood in 2010, one of the most severe ones in Pakistan’s history which claimed the lives of more than 2,000 people and caused damage to more than 20 million people.

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Japan is also prone to natural disasters like typhoon, earthquake, flood and so forth. It is unfortunate that we both are susceptible to natural disasters but fortunate that we can share the experiences and learn lessons from the other.

One of the keys for decreasing the damage resulting from natural disasters is to be well prepared for them. Taking this in mind, Japan has been supporting Pakistan to strengthen its weather forecasting capability.

Also Read: Pakistan keen to start CPEC’s next phase

Currently there are 7 weather radars in Pakistan, out of which 4 radars, in Islamabad, Karachi, Dera Ismail Khan and Rahim Yar Khan, were established by Japan’s grant aid.

Those 4 radars established by Japan’s grant aid cover 80% of the country and 90% of the population. Now, we are going to provide another grant aid assistance for the installation of a new radar in Multan, which will become the fifth radar established by Japan’s aid out of 8.

I strongly believe that those assistance will further augment the capacity of weather forecasting of Pakistan and sincerely hope that the casualties out of natural disasters will substantially decrease.

Toa question about climate change and security the ambassador said, security is the very basis of human life and a critical element for the economic development as well. It is also one of the most important factors to attract investment from other countries. “I would like to appreciate the drastic improvement of th overall security situation in Pakistan in recent years and also the efforts made by the military and law enforcement forces to fight against terrorism at the cost of their valuable lives”.

He said, to support all these efforts of Pakistan, Japan has been contributing to improvement of border management, providing security equipment, including X-ray scanner, to the major airports in Pakistan such as Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi, Multan and Faisalabad, and also to the seaports of Karachi and Bin Qasim with 5 billion Japanese Yen of grant aid assistance in total.

In addition to that, Japan has been supporting the anti-narcotic measures together with international organizations in order to cut off the funding sources of transnational organized crime.

Flood is one of the major concerns in Pakistan. Due to rapid population growth and urbanization, cities in Pakistan are especially vulnerable to flood. Actually the most severe flood in 2010 was followed by other floods in some cities of Pakistan.

Strengthening of the weather forecasting system, which Japan has been doing, is one of the most important ways to mitigate the damage incurred by climate change in Pakistan.

Besides this, improving of the drainage system is also very important for mitigation of the damage and Japan has been doing rehabilitation of drainage pumps and providing excavators for dredging for the cities of Lahore, Gujranwala and Faisalabad to strengthen the drainage capacity, the ambassador concluded.

(This news/article originally appeared in The News on September 18th, 2018)

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