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Japanese government decides on first partnership policy with the South; Places emphasis on ODA programs, critical minerals

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will attend a meeting to discuss partnership with members of the Global South at the Prime Minister’s Office in Tokyo on Tuesday.

The government decided on Tuesday its first policy to strengthen partnership with emerging and developing countries of the Global South at a meeting with relevant ministries and agencies in the Prime Minister’s Office.

Under this policy, members of the Global South will be positioned as partners in creating the economic society of the future, and the government will support companies venturing into areas such as artificial intelligence and decarbonization. The government will also build a framework for new overseas development assistance (ODA) of the type that can mobilize private funds.

“We will continue with a multi-layered collaboration [with those countries] and leading the movements in the international community away from division and conflict and towards harmony,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said at the meeting.

The policy reflects Japan’s concern about steps towards increasing division and conflict in the international community as a result of, for example, Russian aggression against Ukraine, and that cooperation with the Global South is desirable above all to address problems and conflict on a global scale to grab.

Since critical minerals, such as gallium, are essential for the manufacture of strategic and important products, such as semiconductors and rechargeable batteries, the policy recognizes the need for careful consideration at every step from the extraction of such minerals to the production of the final products. are being treated. The policy also says Japan should build relationships with the countries of the South so that those countries can select the country as a partner.

More precisely, the policy includes measures in eight categories, such as: 1) support for businesses, including their facilities and equipment; 2) the expansion and modernization of ODA programs; 3) deepening human resource development and cultural exchanges; and 4) the use of official security assistance, including by providing free defense equipment to the militaries of countries that share the same values ​​as Japan.

As for support for businesses, the policy clearly states that this will be implemented in areas such as AI, green transformation, energy, digitalization, critical minerals, transportation, semiconductors and next-generation vehicles. An example of the intended support is helping with the construction of a hydrogen production plant.

Regarding ODA, the policy refers to the construction of a new mechanism for international cooperation, including the fundamental re-evaluation of the system, for example by mobilizing private funds.



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