USD 2.6M for agriculture development
Non-Project Grant Aid The Japanese government has extended more than 4.2B Yen in grants to Bhutan since 1984
The Japanese government yesterday agreed to extend a grant assistance of about USD 2.6M or 200M Japanese Yen to the Bhutanese government under Non-Project Grant Aid.
The grant aid is intended to provide rapid support to developing nations with economic difficulties such as growing accumulated debt or rising international balance of payments deficit as part of assistance to improve the country’s economic structure.
Under this grant scheme, the government of Japan will support Bhutan in importing goods, which are necessary to promote agricultural development in the country.
Further benefits of the aid can be obtained by using the profits (counterpart fund), which would be generated from sale of goods procured under the grant.
A news release from the Japanese embassy in New Delhi stated that although most farmers in Bhutan were engaged in subsistence agriculture, around 50 percent of the rice consumption in the country required being imported.
Japanese embassy officials in New Delhi said they were aware of the Bhutanese government’s association of high priority to development of agriculture in its 10th Plan.
The officials also said they understood the country’s emphasis to enhancing food self-sufficiency and promoting agricultural commercialisation as its main targets among other policy objectives.
“The government of Japan hopes this grant assistance will help towards the development of agriculture in Bhutan, especially increasing food production,” the official said. “Besides, we hope it’ll contribute to further strengthening of the existing friendly ties between the two nations.”
Japanese government extended a Non-Project Grant Aid to Bhutan during the 2009 fiscal year and the farm machinery procured under the aid is currently being used for rice commercialisation program.
The aid is known as a non-project grant because such aids, officials said were not earmarked for specific projects such as building schools or farm roads.
The exchange of notes to formalise the grant aid was held in New Delhi between Japanese ambassador to Bhutan Mr Akitaka Saiki and his Bhutanese counterpart ambassador Vetsop Namgyel.
The Japanese government has extended more than 4.2B Yen in grants since 1984, for various developmental programs in Bhutan.