Japan Embassy Charge d’Affaires Hiroshi Watanabe on Friday handed over $2.7 million worth of disaster risk reduction equipment to the RMI government represented by Mattlan Zackhras, Minister in Assistance to the President.
“We have the equipment but if we don’t bless and take care of them it’s no use,” said Zackhras at the handover ceremony. “Building resilience is key. And the RMI depends on its key partners.”
“The equipment, including the boats, are to be housed at the Ministry of Public Works,” said National Disaster Management Office (Director) Timmy Langrine. “Boat operators and crew are to be decided.”
The disaster risk reduction equipment is part of grant donation offered by Japan under “Non-Project Type Grant Aid.” The implementation of this grant was announced by Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, to former RMI President Chris Loeak at the bilateral meeting held during the 7th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM7) in Iwaki City, Fukushima, Japan in May 2015.
The new equipment that was blessed last week includes four rescue boats (two each for Majuro and Ebeye), one 100kVA generator for Majuro and five 6kVA portable generators (two for Majuro and three for Ebeye). More items are coming to the RMI in a few months as part of this donation.
Read more about this in the June 30, 2017 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.