Global Environment

National Action Plan for Agenda 21 -Chap. 3

[Agenda 21] National Action Plan for Agenda 21

Chapter 3 COMBATING POVERTY

While many international organizations, such as the World Bank, have been dealing with the problem of poverty, Japan believes that it is important for developing countries to utilize their own domestic policies to relieve poverty, and that it is necessary to promote economic cooperation to provide assistance for such self-help efforts. In order to improve the living standard of poverty-stricken people, promoting the development of sustainable agriculture and farm villages to increase and stabilize food production should be a priority. It is also important to secure employment opportunities for poverty-stricken people by promoting industries and building infrastructure, and to develop human resources through primary education and family planning. Another important task is to study how to involve people on the grassroots level, particularly poverty-stricken people and women, in the development and leadership of such activities. These same people would also be those who benefit the most from such development. In considering this matter, Japan attaches importance to networks of NGOs between developing countries and Japan. When considering the problem of poverty, it is important to look beyond the poverty of countries as a whole, and to take heed of the differences between the wealthy and the poor, and the differences between regions in individual countries.

Taking note of the above, Japan has engaged in the following activities, and will continue positively providing bilateral and multilateral assistance to combat poverty.

(1)
Japan recognizes that relief of poverty in developing countries is an important task, and accordingly, the assistance to fulfill the basic human needs of poverty-stricken people accounted for 54.3% ($835 million) of Japan's grant aid, and for 59.7% ($996 million) of Japan's technical assistance in 1991.
(2)
Japan has provided assistance through such international organizations as the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Office of the United Nations Disaster Relief Co-ordinator (UNDRO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

Ministry of the Environment Government of Japan

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