October 26, 2016
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe witnessed the signing of various documents between the governments of the Philippines and Japan held at the Prime Minister’s Office in Tokyo.
The first document signed was the “Exchange of Notes on the Yen Loan for Harnessing Agribusiness Opportunities through Robust and Vibrant Entrepreneurship Supportive of Peaceful Transformation Loan (HARVEST) Project” that would focus on Mindanao, followed by the “Exchange of Notes on the Yen Loan for the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project (MSCIP) Phase II for the Philippine Coast Guard”.
The MSCIP, which was awarded to Japan Marine United (JMU) Corporation, involves the construction and transport of 10 multi-role response vessels (MRRV) from Japan to the Philippines, and is being funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The BRP Tubbataha, the first of the 10 MRRVs, was already transported to the Philippines last August 11, 2016. The second vessel is set to arrive by the end of the year, while the remaining eight ships would be completed and delivered by August 2018.
The documents of the two notes were signed by Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. and Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Kazuhide Ishikawa, while the “Loan Agreement for MSCIP Phase II” was signed by Secretary Yasay and JICA President Shinichi Kitaoka.
The last document signed was the “Memorandum of Implementation (MOI) for the transfer of Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Trainer Aircraft TC-90s to the Republic of the Philippines pursuant to the Agreement between the Government of Japan and the Government of the Philippines concerning the Transfer of Defense Equipment and Technology.” National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana signed for the Philippines, while Ambassador Ishikawa signed for Japan.
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