[26th March 2014]

H.E the Ambassador Concludes Study Tour of Farming and Energy Projects around Nagano

At Yamagata village office, from right, Mr. Koji Yamaguchi, the President of GJK International, Co., Ltd., Mr. Hirohisa Noda, the President of Noda Wrecker, Co., Ltd., H.E. the Ambassador Ogutu, Mr. Hisashi Momose, the head of Yamagata Village, the Minister-Counsellor Mr. Paul Ndung'u

At the invitation of the local business leaders, the Ambassador of Kenya to Japan, H.E. Mr. Benson H.O. Ogutu, recently made an official visit to Nagano prefecture. Projects visited during the tour included the Japan Agriculture (JA), Matsumoto farmers' cooperative; the Hino Truck Plant in Matsumoto, a solar-power farm; a small scale solar powered street lighting project; and the Hachimori Junior High School.

The main purpose of H.E. the Ambassador's tour in Nagano was to identify appropriate technologies in the agricultural and industrial sectors in the Nagano prefecture of Japan. This is because His Excellency the Ambassador believes that there is need promote mutually beneficial ways for transferring appropriate technologies from Japan including farming technology to promote small scale farming and the overall growth and productivity of our country's agricultural sector. At the Yamagata Branch of the JA Matsumoto, H.E. the Ambassador observed that harvesting, sorting, and the packaging process for yams produced by small scale farmers was all mechanized. It was notable that they used local materials (rice husks) for cushioning yams during the packaging process to avoid damages during transportation.

The Ambassador's delegation took special interest of the automated systems that utilized robots for packing and stacking-up boxes. Ambassador Ogutu observed that rural agriculture in Kenya is still manual and hence the desire to advance it by affordable automated systems for higher productivity and profitability. The Ambassador also visited the Hachimori Junior High School in Asahi-mura, Nagano prefecture to familiarize himself with the system of Education. He was particularly keen to inspect the school's utilization of Solar-Power Generation technologies to aid the provision of quality education.

The Ambassador requested to see the model school following discussions with Mr. Koji Yamaguchi, the President of GJK International Co., Ltd., who hails from Matsumoto city, and Mr. Hirohisa Noda, the President of Noda Wrecker of Yamagata-mura. Both business leaders have interests in solar business under the GJK Solar Power Projects in Africa. In their view, Solar Power Projects in Africa could hold the potential to revolutionalise the provision of education by supplying quality electric power that make it cheaper to run schools and enable students and teachers to work longer and in better conditions.

The Ambassador and his delegation observed that the classes and Gymnasium were fitted with solar panels on their roofs with digital indicators showing the amount of electric power being generated. During their lunch time, H.E. the Ambassador interacted with students and asked them questions such as what kind of extracurricular activities they are undertaking or how long it takes them from their homes to the school. The students answered all the questions in English and H.E Ambassador was truly impressed both with the large sizes of the facilities including classrooms and Gymnasium. The Kenyan delegation was also impressed by the fact that the school made it possible for students to experience sustainable production and consumption of energy which should teach them the importance of sustainable development and energy conservation.

Solar power is appropriate in most rural areas of Kenya which are often off-grid with limited access to main line electricity. Finally His Excellency paid a visit to the Hino Plant in Matsumoto. Led by Mr. Noda, the president of NODA Wrecker Co., Ltd. who organized the visit, the Ambassador noted that the firm is involved in the servicing of Hino trucks that are used to sustain the robust industrial and farming activities in Matsumoto. Mr. Noda who is involved in projects to install solar powered street lamps in West Africa, expressed an interest in investing in Kenya where he plans to start a truck distribution company in the coming days.

H.E. the Ambassador Ogutu share the lunch time with students at Hachimori Junior High school

H.E. the Ambassador Ogutu with Mr. Makoto Iguchi, the head teacher of Hachimori Junior High school

H.E. the Ambassador Ogutu with Mr. Eishi Adachi, the President of Nagano Hino Motors, Ltd.

Solar Panels at Komoro city Solar Power Plant

Solar generated street lamp at Masuzawa Seisakujyo Co., Ltd. (Solar system manufacturing facility)

At Yamagata Branch of JA Matsumoto, the sorting process of Yams

Back to the top