Japan International Cooperation Agency

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Japan International Cooperation Agency
Japan International Cooperation Agency logo.svg
AbbreviationJICA
FormationOctober 1, 2003
Type Incorporated Administrative Agency
Legal statusActive
Purpose Official development assistance
Headquarters1F–6F Ninbancho Building Center, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan
Region served
Worldwide
Official language
Japanese
English (secondary)
President
Shinichi Kitaoka
Affiliations Development Assistance Committee
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Budget
¥1.478 billion yen
Staff
1,845 (March 2015)
Website http://www.jica.go.jp/english
JICA Center Tokyo, Shibuya Jica tokyo nishihara shibuya.JPG
JICA Center Tokyo, Shibuya
Former JICA Center Osaka JICA Center (Osaka, Japan).jpg
Former JICA Center Osaka
JICA Center Kansai, Chuo-ku, Kobe, Hyogo Jica hyogo01s3200.jpg
JICA Center Kansai, Chūō-ku, Kobe, Hyōgo

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (独立行政法人国際協力機構, dokuritsu gyōseihōjin kokusai kyōryoku kikō, JICA) is a governmental agency that delivers the bulk of Official Development Assistance (ODA) for the government of Japan. It is chartered with assisting economic and social growth in developing countries, and the promotion of international cooperation. The OECD’s Development Assistance Committee published a peer review of Japan’s development co-operation in October 2020. [1] It has been led by Professor Shinichi Kitaoka, the former President of the International University of Japan, since 2015.

Contents

History

JICA's predecessor, the previous Japan International Cooperation Agency (also known as "JICA"), was a semigovernmental organization under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, formed in 1974. The new JICA was formed on October 1, 2003. A major component of the comprehensive overhaul of Japan's ODA decided by the National Diet on November, 2006, is that the merger in 2008 will be between JICA and that part of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) which currently extends concessional loans to developing countries.

Since its completion on 1 October 2008, the new JICA has become one of the largest bilateral development organizations in the world with a network of 97 overseas offices, projects in more than 150 countries, and available financial resources of approximately 1 trillion yen ($8.5 billion). The reorganized agency is also responsible for administering part of Japan's grant aid which is currently under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and so all three major ODA components—technical cooperation, grant aid, and concessional loans—are now managed "under one roof." The new JICA will also strengthen research and training capacity in the years ahead, acting as a kind of ODA think tank, contributing to global development strategies, strengthening collaboration with international institutions, and being better able to communicate Japan's position on major development and aid issues.

The forthcoming changes will be an extension of a series of JICA reforms which began in October 2003 when it became administratively independent. The organization's domestic establishments including international centers where JICA helps train some 8,000 foreign public officials, researchers, engineers, instructors and community leaders annually in Japan are being streamlined. The organization is also undergoing operational and organizational change in its country offices. Greater emphasis is being placed on a field-based approach to programs/projects, decentralizing staff, and delegating increased authority from Tokyo headquarters to overseas offices, reducing bureaucracy, and fast tracking programs/projects.

An increasing number of JICA programs/projects focus on what JICA's President, Mrs. Sadako Ogata describes as providing "human security". The recently developed concept of "human security" will empower local communities to have a greater say in their own futures by strengthening grassroots programs, such as improving education and health projects.

Timeline

Presidents

JICA's current and former presidents: [2]

Activities

JICA is part of Japan's official development assistance effort, with a role in providing technical cooperation, capital grants and yen loans. According to the OECD, 2020 official development assistance from Japan increased 1.2% to USD 16.3 billion. [3] JICA's core development programs (aid modalities) are technical assistance programs/projects for capacity and institutional development, feasibility studies and master plans. The Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV), JICA Senior Volunteers, and Japan Disaster Relief Team groups of JICA are widely known among the Japanese general public and tax-payers. Japan Disaster Relief Team members are often seen in news reports on relief efforts after major natural disasters around the world, such as the 2005 South Asian earthquake.

JICA's Mission Statement:

"We, as a bridge between the people of Japan and developing countries, will advance international cooperation through the sharing of knowledge and experience and will work to build a more peaceful and prosperous world."

Major aid modalities

Specialists dispatched to the field include those recommended from related government ministries and agencies as well as those applying through the specialist registration system. Assignments range from extended stays of over a year to shorter stays of less than one year.

Technical training program

JICA provides technical training for participants from the developing countries in a wide range of fields, including medical, industrial, and agricultural training.

JICA has its own accommodation facilities for participants of many of its programs. They are located in the important cities in Japan and are generally referred to as International Centers. The one at Tokyo is Tokyo International Center situated in Hatagaya, Shibuya. The facilities are of good quality and details are available in the JICA website.

Volunteer dispatch

See also

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References