NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 11 – President Mwai Kibaki on Thursday met and held discussions with the visiting Crown Prince of Japan, his Imperial Highness Naruhito who paid him a courtesy call at State House Nairobi.
During the talks, President Kibaki expressed appreciation to the government of Japan for the continued financial and technical support extended to Kenya and other developing countries to combat climate change among other programmes.
Under the Hatoyama Initiative, the President said, Japan extended grants totaling Sh30 billion to Kenya for development of geothermal power and other renewable energy sources and climate change adaptation and mitigation.
President Kibaki noted with gratitude that Japan considered Kenya as a model of her development cooperation saying the country is now the leading recipient of Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA) in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The President reaffirmed the government’s commitment to forge closer partnerships and cooperation between Kenya and Japan for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
The Head of State further said the government was keenly interested in gaining from Japan’s technical assistance in the latest technologies on environment conservation to help ameliorate the adverse climatic conditions affecting large parts of the country.
Expressing his gratitude to the Crown Prince for the audience accorded to Prime Minister Raila Odinga during his recent official visit to Japan, President Kibaki lauded the fruitful discussions between them touching on Climate Change and Energy among other issues.
The President described the visit by the Crown prince as an honour to Kenya and a clear testimony to the friendly relations existing between the two countries.
His Imperial Highness the Crown Prince of Japan arrived in the country late Wednesday for a three day state visit.
While in Kenya, the Crown Prince will tour several Districts in the Mount Kenya region.
Japan has extended Sh288 million grant assistance to underprivileged farmers in support of government’s initiatives to increase food security through procurement of essential inputs including fertilizer, agricultural chemicals and machinery.
During the Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV) held in 2008, Japan doubled her assistance to African countries to boost economic growth, consolidate peace and good governance and address climate change.
Within the framework of TICAD IV, Kenya has benefited from many projects including expansion of teacher training in Mathematics and Science through the Strengthening of Mathematics and Science (SMASE) programme.
Among those at the talks were attended by Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka, Head of Public Service and Secretary to Cabinet Ambassador Francis Muthaura and the Japanese Ambassador to Kenya Shigeo Iwatani.