Japanese universities to train government officials

japanJapan has signed a grant agreement of $1.2 million towards sponsoring 10 young government officials to pursue their Master’s degree programmes in Japanese universities.

The scholarship, under the Human Resource Development programme, is targeting highly capable, young government officials who are expected to help in formulating and implementing social and economic development plans for Ghana’s prosperity.

The Japanese Ambassador, Kaoru Yoshimura, and Hiroshi Sumiyoshi, Chief Representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed on behalf of Japan while the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Hanna Tetteh, signed for Ghana.Mr Yoshimura said the beneficiaries, who are expected to be first degree holders, will undertake their studies in selected areas including Public Health, Economics, Agriculture and Energy.

“These academic areas were chosen by both governments because they are considered strategic in terms of strengthening human resources for Ghana’s national development,” he said.

Mr Yoshimura mentioned that the programme formed part of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Africa Business Education Initiative for the Youth.

The Initiative is expected to provide 1,000 African youth with opportunities to study in Japan as well as do internships in Japanese companies.

According to him, Japan has been offering scholarships to international students, including Ghanaian nationals, adding that, “in the area of human resource development…JICA offers a variety of short and long-term programmes to government officials every year.”

He said about 200 government officials went on short and long term training programmes in Japan last year.

“This year, we have already selected 10 capable government officials and they will commence their studies in Japan in September.”

Ms Tetteh expressed Ghana’s appreciation to Japan for the assistance provided.

She indicated that the grant for Human Resource Development was the fourth in the series of Japanese Government grant to Ghana since 2012.

The Minister added that the grant complements Government’s Education Strategic Plan, which seeks to ensure the holistic development of Ghana.

She said in 2014, Japan offered more than $ 20 million to support Ghana’s underprivileged in the farming, fisheries and health sectors.