In a significant step towards enhancing educational infrastructure in flood-affected areas of Sindh, Pakistan and Japan recently signed an agreement worth $5.3 million. This grant agreement, aimed at reconstructing educational facilities, was formalized during a signing ceremony for the Exchange of Notes and Grant Agreement held at the Economic Affairs Division.
Understanding the Agreement
The Exchange of Notes and Grant Agreement involves the Governments of Pakistan and Japan and pertains to “The Programme for Reconstruction of Educational Facilities in Flood-affected Areas in Sindh.” The Government of Japan has extended grant assistance worth JPY794 million, which is approximately equivalent to $5.3 million, to the Government of Pakistan through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). This grant is specifically directed towards addressing the challenges faced by the educational infrastructure due to the devastating floods in 2022 and heavy monsoon rains in the Sindh region.
A Focus on Reconstructing School Buildings
The primary focus of this agreement is the reconstruction of nine fully damaged school buildings in six districts of Sindh, which were severely affected by natural disasters. This initiative is aimed at ensuring that students have a safe and conducive learning environment, with special attention given to enhancing the access of girls to education.
The crucial documents that formalized this agreement were signed and exchanged by prominent officials. Dr. Kazim Niaz, the Secretary of Economic Affairs Division (EAD), represented the Pakistani government, while WADA Mitsuhiro, the Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan, represented the Japanese government. Additionally, the Grant Agreement was signed by Saeed Ashraf Siddiqi, Joint Secretary of EAD, and Yasutimsu Kinoshita, Chief Representative of JICA.
Appreciation and Commitment
Dr. Niaz expressed his heartfelt appreciation to the Government and people of Japan for their valuable support, and he assured the commitment of extending all necessary facilitation for more meaningful cooperation between the two sides. Ambassador WADA Mitsuhiro, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Pakistan, reciprocated by assuring his commitment to working closely with the Government of Pakistan to further strengthen the friendly ties and bilateral cooperation between the two nations.
The $5.3 million grant agreement between Pakistan and Japan is not just a financial deal; it’s a symbol of solidarity and cooperation in the face of natural disasters. The reconstruction of educational facilities in flood-affected areas of Sindh will have a lasting impact on the lives of students and their communities.