ISLAMABAD: The Japanese government has provided $49 million grant assistance for the extension of intensive care at maternal and child health care centre and children’s hospital at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) and to strengthen cargo inspection capacity at dry ports of the country.
Special Secretary (Asia-Pacific) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ahmad Imtiaz and Japanese Ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori Matsuda signed the agreements on behalf of their respective governments in Tokyo on Tuesday in the presence of Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and his Japanese counterpart Taro Kono.
According to a press release issued on Wednesday by the Japanese Embassy in Islamabad, the PIMS will get a grant of $32m. The children hospital at PIMS has been built with the assistance of Japan.
A new ward and necessary medical equipment, especially for mothers and children who require urgent attention, will be provided to the PIMS under the grant assistance. This will enable the institution to provide better quality services for high-risk mothers and children, and accommodate 300 intensive-care patients a year.
Japan has placed a high priority on maternal and child health in its development assistance for Pakistan and started assisting the PIMS since 1982. The PIMS is one of the symbolic cooperation which represents the friendship between Pakistan and Japan, embassy says.
Under the economic and social development programme, the grant assistance of $17m will be utilised by the Federal Board of Revenue to install appropriate security inspection equipment such as X-ray cargo scanners to maintain high security level at dry ports in order to meet the international standards. The Japanese government expressed the hope that the provision of equipment will also make the cargo clearance process more efficient.
Published in Dawn, April 25th, 2019