By Etuka Sunday
Federal Government has held bilateral discussions with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) power and infrastructure projects as well as some pipeline projects.
The Nigerian delegation was led by the Honourable Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, while the Senior Vice President of JICA, Mr. Hiroshi Kato, led the JICA delegation.
Other members of the Nigerian delegation are the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Finance (FMF), Alhaji Mahmoud Isa-Dutse; Nigeria’s Alternate Executive Director at the World Bank, Alhaji Haruna Mohammed and the Director of International Economic Relations Department of the FMF, Alhaji Aliyu Ahmed.
A statement by the Special Adviser, Media & Publicity to HMF, Oluyinka Akintunde said, Isa-Dutse, who represented the Finance Minister, commended JICA for strengthening the bilateral relations between Nigeria and Japan.
He assured that Nigeria and the agency would continue to work harmoniously towards the realization of ongoing infrastructure projects in the power, water and road sectors as well as the rehabilitation of Jebba hydro power project.
The leader of JICA delegation, Kato, explained that the agency called for the Minister in order to review a proposal to support nutrition improvement in Nigeria and also appraise ongoing infrastructure projects as well as some projects in the pipeline.
“JICA is planning to implement the Technical Cooperation Project on capacity development for nutrition improvement in the Federal Capital Territory. This project has five years duration.
“The concept seeks to improve the nutrition situation of rural people in the FCT through dietary improvement and local production and local consumption of nutrition rich food,” Kato said.
He recalled that the Initiative for Food and Nutrition Security in Africa (IFNA) was launched in Nairobi in August 2016 during the Sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development.
The IFNA, he noted, was created to help African Governments accelerate the implementation of their nutrition policies, and also to ensure integration of agriculture into nutrition actions at the local level.
On the power transmission project, Kato said JICA was working towards signing a loan agreement for the project by March 2019.
He expressed the agency’s interest in implementing a master plan study on National Power System Development.
He assured that the National Power System Development project would be a technical cooperation between Nigeria and JICA.