WFP and Japan cement their partnership

WFP welcomes a food aid contribution of approximately US $12 million approved by the Government of Japan, as further evidence of the agency’s strong partnership with Japan to build peace and human security at the occasion of the third WFP-Japan annual consultation held in Tokyo yesterday.

WFP has welcomed a food aid contribution of JPY 1.385 billion (approximately US $12 million) approved by the Government of Japan, as further evidence of the agency’s strong partnership with Japan to build peace and human security on the occasion of the third WFP-Japan annual consultation held in Tokyo yesterday.

The Japanese Government’s leadership on building peace and human security is unparalleled

John Powell, WFP’s Deputy Executive Director

The donation is addressed to WFP’s six operations which are in transition from conflict to peace, such as Afghanistan, Mindanao of the Philippines and the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

The food aid to these operations is critically important for peace and stability in the region and expected to play an important role in consolidating the nascent peace.

Commitment to peace-building

This is in addition to the donation confirmed yesterday for WFP’s operation in Myanmar, totalling JPY 32.5 million (approximately US$280,000).

The latest package of aid to WFP is a tangible sign of Japan’s commitment to human security and peace-building.

“The Japanese Government’s leadership on building peace and human security is unparalleled. WFP shares Japan’s vision of a world where people need not fear hunger,” said John Powell, WFP’s Deputy Executive Director, concluding the third annual consultation with government officials in Tokyo.

Tangible contribution

“With Japan’s help, WFP provides a tangible contribution to peace in places like Sudan, rebuilding vital infrastructure. We are so grateful for Japan’s strong support for WFP,” said Powell.

WFP helps roughly 90 million people in 80 countries every year.

In addition to delivering food to people struck by disaster and poverty, WFP also provides vital logistics support to the entire humanitarian community, running air and other transport services, rebuilding roads, ports and railways to ensure relief aid gets through.

Important partner

“WFP is an important partner for human security with the most vulnerable people as its beneficiaries. We also recognise the important role that WFP plays in food aid, logistics and peace-building,” said Dr. Takahiro Shinyo, Ambassador and Director-General, Global Issues Department of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“We have reaffirmed our strong partnership in the annual consultation and are looking forward to further cooperation.”

The aid package of JPY 1.385 billion (US$12 million) approved today will be used in six WFP operations.

Of the total donation, JPY 500 million (US$4.3 million) goes to Bangladesh to help improve nutrition for 1.1 million vulnerable people; JPY 350 million (US$3.0 million) to Afghanistan for internally displaced persons (IDPs) and vulnerable groups; JPY 135 million (US$1.2 million) to Nicaragua for the most vulnerable segments of society; and JPY 100 million (US$900,000) to Timor Leste to assist pregnant women and children under five years old.

Third largest donor

Japan will continue its support to building peace in troubled areas, with JPY 140 million (US$1.2 million) for displaced people returning to their homes and demobilised soldiers in Mindanao in the Philippines.

Additionally, JPY 160 (US$1.4 million) will be directed to vulnerable people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

In 2005, Japan provided to WFP JPY 18.6 billion (US$ 160.5 million) and was WFP’s third largest donor after the United States and European Union.

Donations last year included US$4.8 million through its United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security for WFP operations in Angola, India and Afghanistan, to enhance human security in these countries.

Japan also donated a total of US$22.45 million to WFP’s logistic operations in areas affected by the Indian Ocean tsunami, Sudan and Pakistan.