Accra, August 7, 2020: The co-signing ceremony for the Exchange of Notes for two separate grant aids from Japan, totaling ¥350,000,000 Japanese Yen (approximately 3.3 million US Dollars) was held on Thursday, August 6, 2020, in Accra, Ghana.
The Exchange of Notes between Ambassador Genevieve A. Kennedy, Ambassador Extraordinary, and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Liberia to the Republic of Ghana and Ambassador Tsutomu Himeno, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the Republic of Liberia was the culmination of the grant assistance in food and medical supply approved by the cabinet of Japan on July 17, 2020, for Liberia.
In his opening remarks, Ambassador Himeno said that the grant assistances showcases the strong Japan-Liberia friendship and partnership and expressed the wish of the people and the Government of Japan that this assistance will make a valuable contribution to complementing the efforts of the people and the Government of Liberia in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic and food insecurity.
In response, Ambassador Kennedy conveyed on behalf of President George Manneh Weah and the Government and people of Liberia heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the Government and people of Japan for the essential grant aids to Liberia. Ambassador Kennedy further recounted the strong development partnership that has existed between Liberia and Japan since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1961 and is reflected in the implementation of several development-related projects encompassing infrastructural and health development, including the construction of the Liberia-Japanese Friendship Maternity Hospital at the John F. Kennedy Medical Centre and the reconstruction and expansion of the Somalia Drive Road (now referred to as the “Japan Freeway”).
Additionally, Liberia’s Ambassador to Ghana cited Japan’s provision of specialised vocations as well as the Monbusho programme that enable Liberians to study at various Japanese colleges and universities as examples of Japan’s sustained development-related partnership with Liberia. Ambassador Kennedy noted that she was one of the beneficiaries of the academic programme of the Japanese Government to provide scholarships to Liberians to seek post-graduate studies and through the Monbusho programme had studied in Osaka and Niigata obtaining a master’s degree.
Ambassador Kennedy further noted that the co-signing of these Notes illustrates the esteem and warm feelings between the two countries and hope that the economic and technical cooperation between the two countries will be further deepened based on mutual respect and mutual benefit.
Ambassador Kennedy, who reiterated President Weah’s commitment to further the economic and infrastructural development of Liberia, emphasised the President’s appreciation of Japan’s support to Liberia which was conveyed last August in Yokohama when President Weah and Prime Minister Abe had a bilateral tete-a-tete during the TICAD Summit.
The two separate grant aids, as part of Japan’s Economic and Social Development Programme in response to the global challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic, are for medical supplies, valued at ¥100,000,000 Japanese Yen (Approximately $950,000 United States Dollars), and food aid assistance which is valued at ¥250,000,000 Japanese Yen (approximately$ 2.35 million United States Dollars).