Japan to support farmers, Rohingya refugees

Staff Correspondent

7th January, 2019 10:47:21 printer

The Government of Japan and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) concluded an agreement on Sunday to provide $5 million to support Bangladeshi smallholder farmers and people displaced from Myanmar through December 2020.

The agreement was signed by WFP Bangladesh Representative and Country Director, Richard Ragan, and the Ambassador of Japan to Bangladesh, Hiroyasu Izumi, at a ceremony at the WFP Country Office, said a press release.

“We thank the people of Japan for their continued assistance to this ongoing crisis in Cox’s Bazar. The needs remain substantial and this contribution enables us to continue our support to displaced people while developing new programming to support Bangladeshi smallholder farmers,” said Ragan.

 “From this project, both farmers and displaced people will benefit. I sincerely wish that this project will be able to contribute to the development of Bangladesh and support of displaced people in Cox’s Bazar,” said Hiroyasu Izumi. Japan’s contribution will support 2,000 Bangladeshi smallholder farmers in Patuakhali and Cox’s Bazar Districts with training and new tools and infrastructure to support their livelihoods.

Part of the contribution will support the expansion of WFP’s e-voucher programme to people displaced from Myanmar.  This innovative programme allows participants to obtain a variety of food at special outlets contracted by WFP in the settlements.  About a quarter of people displaced from Myanmar in Cox’s Bazar receive assistance by e-voucher, and this contribution from Japan will support 21,000 people with e-voucher assistance for 12 months.

This represents a continuation of Japan’s strong support to WFP’s response in Bangladesh. Japan contributed $15 million to WFP Bangladesh in the beginning of the response, which provided timely funding in a time of great need.