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February 27, 2018

Beneficial aid provided by good friends

At the joint press conference between the State Counsellor and the Foreign Minister of Japan held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nay Pyi Taw on 12th January 2018, the Japanese Foreign Minister clarified Japan’s assistance programs aimed at raising the living standards of the Myanmar people.
The program for providing development assistance to Myanmar is, in fact, the consequence of the official State Visit of President U Htin Kyaw in December in 2017, in which the Japanese Prime Minister gave his solemn pledge that Japan would help Myanmar in building Myanmar into a democratic nation.
It is learnt that the Japanese Government had made a policy decision to provide Myanmar with Japanese Yen 800 billion worth of development assistance within a period of 5 years under the Japan-Myanmar cooperation program which had been agreed by both countries since two years ago. The program is aimed at making democracy deep-rooted in Myanmar, developing Myanmar’s economy and bringing about national reconciliation in the country.
Concerning economic development out of the development assistance program, the Japanese Government has chosen to help in three sectors—Yangon Urbanization Project, National transportation and Electricity generation. The objectives of Japan’s assistance progam for Myanmar based upon the said three sectors must be said to be noble deeds. This program aims to raise the living standard of the Myanmar people before 2020.
Under the program, new railway coaches with running capacity of 100 kilometer per hour will run between Yangon-Taungoo prior to September 2020, it was learnt. It was also decided that extension of running up to Mandalay would be made in 2023. When the program is completed, travelling hours can be reduced respectively, taking only 3 ½ hours for a 7 hour journey between Yangon-Taungoo and only 8 hours between Yangon-Mandalay.
With effective transportation between Yangon-Mandalay just in a short period of time, travelling and trade flows between the two economic hubs of the nation will be easy and convenient more than ever. This will definitely support the socio-economic development of the people with the aid of improved rail transportation. Under the renovation program of the Yangon Circular Railway, 18 new coaches will be added before September 2020. By 2022 daily routes of the circular railways will be raised up to 180 from 120 present routes. Thus, it is expected to reduce traffic jam problems currently being faced by the Yangon citizens. And, social lives of people in the urban area will be raised up as the development of the immediate vicinity of the circular railway will be implemented.
This is only a part of the transportation sector programs of the friendly development assistance provided by Japan. Many other programs are not discussed here. With due respect for the meritorious deeds of the donor country, we should all work hard in the different sectors we are assigned in, with discipline and a deep understanding of the historic significance of all these programs in our transition to a developed and prosperous democratic republic.

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