[4th June 2012]

NEW JICA BOSS VISITS KENYA ON HIS MAIDEN TRIP TO AFRICA

President Mwai Kibaki with the visiting JICA president, H.E Akihiko Tanaka when he called on him at State House, Nairobi.

Prof. Akihiko Tanaka, the new JICA president undertook his inaugural visit to Africa from 27th May to 3rd June, 2012. His Mission took him to Tanzania and Kenya.

The highlight of Prof. Tanaka's visit was the conclusion of the Kshs. 29 billion (JPY 28.713 billion) Yen loan for the construction of Dongokundu bypass in Mombasa Island. During his visit to Kenya Prof. Tanaka held talks with H.E. the President of Kenya, other government officials and visited development projects being implemented by JICA.

President Kibaki said the signing of the loan agreement between Kenya and Japan paved the way for the commencement of the construction of the bypass that will not only ease traffic in the Coastal city of Mombasa but also open up the South Coast for rapid development.

During the meeting, the President also thanked the Japanese Government for providing a grant towards the dualing of Ngong Road from the City Mortuary to Dagoretti and, at the same time, requested the Japanese Government to consider extending the dual carriageway to Karen.

He also appealed to the Japanese Government to consider funding the three berths at the Port of Lamu at an estimated cost of Kshs 21 billion and called for the fast-tracking of ongoing consultations towards this endeavor.
The President also commended the Government of Japan for successfully conducting the feasibility studies of Lamu Port and Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) project.
President Kibaki also acknowledged the Government of Japan's support for Kenya's agriculture, education and health sectors.

The President noted that, to date, cumulative Japan assistance to Kenya stands at Kshs 419 billion (JPY414.852 billion)with Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI), Mombasa Airport Improvement Project, New Nyali Bridge, Mtwapa, Kilifi, Athi and Ikutha bridges being some of the major projects that benefited from this funding.

The JICA President, who was in the country to familiarize himself with projects supported by his Government, pledged Japan's continued financial and technical cooperation towards Kenya's Vision 2030 flagship projects.

Prof. Tanaka hailed the existing good relations between Kenya and Japan and vowed to work towards enhancing the friendly bilateral ties between the two countries.

H.E. President Kibaki and Prof. Tanaka also discussed the security situation in Somalia. Noting that the term of the Transition Federal Government is coming to an end and elections will be held in August this year, President Kibaki and Prof. Tanaka underscored the need for the international community to support the stabilization and reconstruction of Somalia.

In this regard, Prof. Tanaka commended Kenya's commitment to addressing the security situation in Somalia and region, noting that no single incidence of piracy has taken place since the entry of the Kenya Defence Forces in Somalia.

On environment, the JICA President pledged his country's support for Kenya's agenda in the forthcoming United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (RIO +20) in Brazil in respect of the upgrading of the UNEP in Nairobi.

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