The Daily Manila Shimbun


Philippines, Japan officials firm up Tokyo infra commitments

May 12, 2017

Philippine officials and their Japanese counterparts have met in Yokohama, Japan on the sidelines of the recent 50th annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to firm up commitments on projects covered by the one-trillion yen financing package pledged by Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the Philippines, a statement from the finance department said Friday. Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III had informed Japan Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso that topping the list of Manila’s proposed projects for possible Japanese assistance in terms of financing and technology transfer are the Mega Manila Subway and the Manila-Clark Railway Project. Dominguez expressed anew the Philippine government’s deep appreciation for Prime Minister Abe’s one trillion yen pledge of official development assistance (ODA) and loans to help the Duterte administration carry out its ambitious infrastructure program and effectively implement its campaign against illegal drugs. In their Yokohama meeting, Aso and Dominguez underscored the importance of infrastructure to the Philippine economy and how it could provide more jobs and facilitate trade. Dominguez and Aso co-chaired the 20th ASEAN + 3 (China, Japan, South Korea) Meeting was also held in Yokohama. Aso briefly discussed with Dominguez Japan’s proposed bilateral currency swap arrangements with ASEAN, which Aso had proposed at the ASEAN + 3 Meeting. Japan’s proposal was to set up a yen-based fund that will provide up to $40 billion to ASEAN economies under existing bilateral currency swap arrangements. The Philippines-Japan Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation held its inaugural meeting in Tokyo last March to discuss the Philippines’ priority projects for possible implementation with Japan ODA financing and support. DMS