Japan Ambassador Norio Saito joined in the handover ceremony for “the Project for Procurement of Sea Transport for Copra in Arno Atoll.”
The $135,500 grant for a new boat was funded through Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGP). The ceremony was attended by Arno Mayor Bernard Chong-Gum, Arno Irooj Katwel Jormelu and his wife, Aik Binejal, Executive councilman of Arno, Arno Atoll Local Government (AALG) council members, and others as well as officials of the Embassy of Japan.
Ambassador Saito congratulated Chong-Gum on the completion of the project. He stated that the boat is expected to contribute to further activation of the copra industry in Arno, and hoped that the boat would be utilized effectively and properly for many years to come.
Binejal spoke on behalf of the mayor and people of AALG, expressing appreciation toward people and government of Japan for their kindest support.
He stated that AALG had been supporting copra transportation, which amounts to about 140 tons annually, by renting private or governmental boats. He added that the new boat granted this time would enable AALG to transport twice as much as the current amount per year, and people of Arno Atoll would benefit from this project.
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