Japan Provides JPY 46 million of Grant Aid to Laos

The Japanese government has provided JPY 46 million (US$ 414,676 ) of grant aid for the Project for Improving the Lower Secondary School Environment in the Central and Southern Provinces in Laos.

The grant aims to further improve the overall education of lower secondary schools through a variety of measures such as constructing new school buildings, dormitories, and toilets.

The ceremony for the exchange of notes on the grant aid was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Vientiane Capital on May 26.

The notes were signed and exchanged by Ambassador of Japan to the Lao PDR, Mr Takeshi Hikihara, and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Lao PDR, Mr Sengphet Houngboungnuang in the presence of relevant officials of both sides.

The government established lower secondary education as compulsory in July 2015. Furthermore, the 8th Education sector Development Plan (2016-2020) aims to improve the Gross Enrolment Ratio of secondary education to 85% by 2020.

The grant assistance will contribute to the human resource development in the Lao PDR, helping Laos realize its vision of graduating from LDC status by 2020, said Mr Sengphet Houngboungnuang.

The government of the Lao PDR identifies education as one of the most important sectors, where by the universalisation and improvement of basic education are deemed preconditions for human resource development toward continuous economic growth and poverty alleviation, and is thus prioritized in the national policy, said Ambassador Takeshi.

Japan has been engaged with the economic and social development of the Lao PDR for many years.

Last year has been a historic year for Japan’s ODA to Laos as both prime ministers agreed to plot out a joint cooperative development plan.

The decision on the provision of grant aid in accordance with the joint cooperative development plan was communicated by Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe to Prime Minister of Laos Thongloun Sisoulith at the bilateral summit meeting held on September 6, 2016.

Source: Lao News Agency