July 19, 2024, 3:05 am

Diplomatic correspondent

2024-07-11 11:15:28 BdST

Japan to revise aid plan for Bangladesh’s 2041 goals

Japan is reviewing its Country Assistance Plan for Bangladesh to support the nation’s transition from a least developed country (LDC) to a developed nation by 2041, says Japanese Ambassador to Bangladesh Iwama Kiminori.

During a meeting with Planning Minister Major General (retd) Abdus Salam at his office in the capital on Wednesday, Ambassador Kiminori pledged Japan’s continued support for Bangladesh’s development.

The planning minister informed reporters that he had sought technical assistance from Japan for the preparation of Bangladesh’s Ninth Five-Year Plan.

Abdus Salam also called for Japanese collaboration in the second phase of the Public Investment Management System to increase the efficiency of government spending.

The Ninth Five-Year Plan, which aims for Bangladesh to become a developed country by 2041, will be implemented between July 2025 and June 2030. The General Economics Department (GED) of the Ministry of Planning is preparing the plan, and Japan is ready to cooperate accordingly.

Following the meeting, the Japanese ambassador said that various issues, including Bangladesh’s future plans, were discussed.

“Bangladesh is working on the Ninth Five-Year Plan. In this big plan, Japan will finance according to Japan’s policy and Bangladesh’s needs,” he added.

Japan is revising its Country Assistance Plan, and the need for assistance in any sector will be determined through discussions between the two countries, with Japan aligning with the government’s priorities, he mentioned.

A concept paper has already been drafted for the Ninth Five-Year Plan, titled “Sustainable and Equitable Growth for Higher Middle Income,” which involves secretaries from more than 15 ministries.

The Eighth Five-Year Plan, covering July 2020 to June 2025, was the first in a series of four plans designed to implement the government’s Vision 2041. The implementation of the Eighth Plan was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the government aims to compensate for this in the Ninth Plan.

Minister Abdus Salam stated that the Japanese ambassador came to congratulate him and that Japan has been requested to continue its cooperation in capacity building.

Specifically, support is sought for the second stage of the Public Investment Management System, with 40 projects already implemented with Japanese funding.

Discussions were also held on increasing Bangladesh’s skills, with Japan committing to stand by the implementation of the five-year and future plans.

In response to a question, Abdus Salam said, “Japan is always with us. They have promised to stand by various developments in the future.”

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