Kuwait and Japan on Thursday signed two bilateral cooperation agreements on transportation and public work projects such as expertise exchange and human resource development.
The memorandums of cooperation (MOC) were signed by visiting Kuwaiti Minister of State for Development and Planning Affairs and Minister of Social Affairs and Labour Hind Al-Sabeeh and Japanese Land, Infrastructure and Transport and Tourism Minister Akihiro Ota in a ceremony here.
Under the agreement between Kuwait's Ministry of Communications and Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport and Tourism, the two countries promote their cooperation in the transportation through exchanges of information.
Another agreement was between Kuwait's Ministry of Public Works and the above-mentioned Japanese ministry, which is designed to promote cooperation in the field of public work projects, such as infrastructure development, environmental security and protection, and contracts. The scope of the cooperation includes development of human resources through dispatch of experts and organizing of seminars.
Speaking to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) and Kuwait TV after the ceremony, Ota said, "The two MOCs today will greatly help Kuwait, which has long-standing relationship with Japan, push forward its infrastructure development. We are willing to contribute to Kuwait's infrastructure development with our high technology." Noting that during Japanese Prime Minister Abe's visit to Kuwait in August last year, the two countries signed MOC for the policy dialogue on Kuwait's national development between the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and his ministry and the Kuwaiti Supreme Council for Planning and Development, Ota said Thursday's deal brought the pact into shape. "We had a fruitful meeting today. I also thank the minister for her consideration in facilitating various Japanese companies their contribution to the development of Kuwait." For her part, Al-Sabeeh said the MOCs on transportation is involved in all kinds of cooperation which the Kuwaiti side requires from Japan, including railway service.
Echoing Ota, the Kuwaiti minister said, "Today's MOC is an activation of the agreement which was signed last year with attendance of the two prime ministers, and enables Japan to pass on its know-how to Kuwait. We also agreed to follow the empowerment of this new pact." Al-Sabeeh went on to say that she discussed with Ota Kuwait's mega projects under the 2015-2020 National Development Plan, with putting focus on ways to monitor the plan, exchange experts on that field and spur Japanese private sector's involvement in the development plan.
According to Al-Sabeeh, Ota also expressed gratitude to the Kuwaiti Cabinet for its decision in July to suspend the offset program. "Minister Ota said the decision will encourage Japanese companies to make more investment in Kuwait.
Kuwaiti Ambassador in Japan Abdulrahman Al-Otaibi and the Kuwaiti delegation accompanying Al-Sabeeh, including Secretary-General of the Kuwaiti Supreme Council for Planning and Development Hashim Al-Rifai also attended the signing ceremony.