By Reinhardt Jacobsen
VIENNA (IDN) – Japan has announced that it will support eight UNIDO projects aimed at ensuring human security for the most vulnerable populations in Ethiopia, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Liberia, Nigeria, Somalia and the Syrian Arab Republic.
Ambassador Mitsuru Kitano, the Permanent Representative of Japan to the International Organizations in Vienna, affirmed on March 28 that the projects will “help individuals to live under healthy conditions, consolidate their livelihoods and with all of this gain optimism for their future.”
He also expressed appreciation for the role of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) “as a platform for partnership bringing together recipient countries, donor countries and the private sector.”
The projects, for which Japan is contributing around US$5.2 million, will benefit women, youth, refugees and internally-displaced persons, who suffer from inequality, marginalization and exclusion.
A joint event hosted by UNIDO Director General LI Yong and Ambassador Kitano in the presence of representatives from most of the recipient countries showcased the projects.
According to UNIDO, the event marked the continued support of the Government of Japan, with the projects aiming to strengthen the “humanitarian-development nexus and promoting inclusive and sustainable industrial development” by taking a human security approach, as highlighted by LI Yong during his opening remarks.
UNIDO informed that the project in Ethiopia would seek to improve water supply, public health and general environmental quality by introducing an innovative environmentally-friendly water sanitation system.
It also supports the Rural WASH Programme of the Government of Ethiopia, which includes the construction of 55,865 new water points and water supply schemes, and the rehabilitation of 20,010 existing schemes in rural areas by 2020.
In Iraq, the project will introduce soft skills training coupled with technical training in the industrial, trade and agricultural secondary schools. The project will increase the employability of the upcoming generation within the host community, refugees and internally-displaced persons.
In Jordan, the project aims to improve social stabilization by enhancing economic resilience, through the employment of Jordanians from the host communities, and Syrian refugees, in the textile industry in Irbid and Mafraq.
This will be achieved by designing and implementing a comprehensive training programme, which would facilitate skills development for income generating activities in the region.
In Lebanon the project will create economic opportunities and jobs in the carpentry and construction sector, particularly among host and refugee communities in the northern areas of the country. Building upon previous interventions, the technical assistance focuses on delivering market-based wood and construction skills training based on the design of new training modules.
A project in Liberia, implemented in Bassa County, will facilitate cooperation between the private sector and transnational corporations in the wood sector by targeting the high unemployment rates, especially among youth. Technical and vocational trainings are developed in collaboration with transnational corporations to increase the entrepreneurial skills of the local community.
In Nigeria, building on a previous project funded by the Government of Japan, the project would further improve senior secondary school education to enable students to start and manage micro and small businesses. After the successful implementation of the project, training on trade and entrepreneurship will be included in the curriculum of all senior secondary schools in Nigeria.
A project will also be implemented in Somalia’s most recently established State, Hirshabelle. Civil war and clan-based conflict have had a profound and adverse impact on the productive capacity of all sectors of the economy.
With the goal of contributing to community recovery, stability, economic growth, and preventing conflict, the project shifts the focus from humanitarian-based to sustainable development assistance by delivering technical and vocational skills training to address the nexus between youth unemployment and engagement in violent extremism.
The repercussions of the conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic require the joint efforts of United Nations organizations, UNIDO said in a media release. Therefore, the Government of Japan will fund a project that is part of a joint programme with the United Nations Development Programme as lead agency.
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT), the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are partnering organizations.
It aims to maintain and improve Syrian human capital in various fields by providing multi-sectoral training opportunities to maintain and upgrade the skills and knowledge of Syrians for mid- and long-term resilience building. UNIDO conducts a needs assessment for the clean-up required for early recovery of critical, productive and industrial infrastructure in the Syrian Arab Republic. [IDN-InDepthNews – 29 March 2018]
Photo: UNIDO Director General LI Yong and Ambassador Mitsuru Kitano, the Permanent Representative of Japan to the International Organizations in Vienna. Credit: UNIDO
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