JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) provided a debt of JPY50 billion (US$452 million) to Indonesia under the official development assistance soft loan agreement between Indonesia and Japan. The funds aimed to support the disaster-related policies and strategies through policy dialogue and to provide budget assistance co-financed with the French Development Agency.
The agency said in its official statement, the soft loan has an interest ratio of 0.45 percent per year with a tenure of 15 years and a grace period of 5 years. The disbursement will start in May 2021. Last year, Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, has promised to President Joko Widodo, that Japan will provides a low-interest loans worth of JPY50 billion to support Indonesia to strengthen the disaster mitigation capacity during the pandemic.
“Taking into account on the impact of the COVID-19 spread on the Indonesian economy, on this occasion, Japan has designated a loan as fiscal assistance of JPY50 billion to increase Indonesia’ disaster mitigation capacity,” he told the media.
His country will also encourage cooperation in developing health studies in Indonesia by providing medical goods and equipment. Under the Japan – Indonesia Economic Partnerships Agreement framework, the two leaders also agreed on Travel Corridor Arrangement for essential businesses and nurses as well as caregivers.
He also stated, on the the infrastructure projects, his country will support Indonesia, especially on the construction of Mass Rapid Transit, the Jakarta – Surabaya semi-fast train, Patimban Port, development in outer islands, and cooperation to increase the economic resilience.
Suga has an interest in visiting Southeast Asian to promote Japan’ Free and Open Indo – Pacific vision and trade talks over mutual concerns about an increasingly assertive China in the region. Both leaders also agreed their foreign and defense ministers will meet soon to accelerate talks over the transfer of defense equipment and technology.
While, Widodo called his country needs to strengthened the Tokyo – Jakarta ties “amid an increasingly glaring rivalry between the world’ big powers”. He also welcome the signing of the memorandum of health cooperation between the two countries on Oct. 19.
He said, Indonesia and Japan also share a common vision in advancing multilateralism, including equal access to affordable vaccines. He appreciated Japan’ commitment to contribute to the formation of the ASEAN COVID-19 Response Fund. In the economic cooperation, the head of state welcomed the relocation and expansion of investment from Japanese companies to Indonesia, such as Denso, Sagami, Panasonic, Mitsubishi Chemical, and Toyota Motor Corp.
“I also asked Japan to pay attention on the problem of import permits for agricultural, forestry, and fishery products from Indonesia. I also encouraged Japan to participate in the Sovereign Wealth Fund,” said Widodo.
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