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Japan provides ₱121M Scholarship Fund for Filipinos

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An Exchange of Notes (E/N) for The Project for Human Resource Development Scholarship by Japanese Grant Aid (JDS) was signed by Ambassador ENDO Kazuya and Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique A. Manalo on May 17, 2024, at the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Japan commits JPY 327 million (approximately PHP 121 million*) through this agreement, which will fund the master’s degree education of 20 young Filipino Civil Servants starting in the Academic Year 2025-2026 at premier universities in Japan.

The JDS is a component of Japan’s support for the human resource development initiatives of the Philippines, aiming to enhance the expertise of the JDS Fellows in their respective fields, thereby contributing to the development of their country. Since 2002, Japan has supported a total of 439 JDS Fellows from the Philippines.

The Exchange Notes between Japan and the Philippines covers two very important projects namely, Phase 3 of the Maritime Safety and Capability Improvement Project (MSCIP) and the Project for Human Resource Development Scholarship by Japanese Grant Aid (JDS). .

Already, Japan has provided the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) with ten (10) 44-meter-class and two (2) 97-meter-class multipurpose vessels in the first two phases of the MSCIP. These vessels were expected, and indeed are used to enhance PCG’s ability to conduct maritime rescue and law enforcement operations in a timely and appropriate manner, contributing to the overall maritime safety of the Philippines. The addition of high-frequency communication systems for the ships and onshore facilities will further ensure the effective operation of the multipurpose vessels. 

Ambassador ENDO noted that securing safe navigation as well as free and open maritime order in this region is imperative. He said, “As the situation surrounding the Philippines has continuously been serious, the Philippine Coast Guard is standing in the frontline to protect our common interests and Rules-based maritime order”.

“On May 15, I visited a 97m-class-multipurpose vessel and heard from Admiral Gavan about the rigors of the PCG’s operations, and we reaffirmed the importance of deepening cooperation between Japan and the  Philippines. The Notes signed today will provide five more multi-purpose vessels which are the largest vessels in the PCG. We hope that this support will further contribute to ensure a Rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific,” Ambassador ENDO added. 

Ambassador ENDO also revealed that the second E/N is the JDS, a grant aid through the Japan International  Cooperation Agency (JICA). JDS will enable young Philippine government officials to pursue their graduate studies at leading universities in Japan. Upon their return, they are hoped to become future leaders helping lead social and economic development policies for the Philippines and serve as a bridge to  Japan and other nations.  

Since the JDS began accepting students from the Philippines in 2002, a total of 439 young officials have studied in Japan and most are now holding key positions in the Philippine government. We are optimistic that this signing will sustain and further strengthen the bilateral relations between our two countries. 

*From BSP: PHP-JPY Exchange Rate = .3704 (2024 April Average)

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