Official Development Assistance (ODA)

Cultural Grant Assistance

June 6, 2017
Japanese

Cultural Grant Assistance is a part of Official Development Assistance (ODA), provided to contribute to the promotion of cultural and higher educational activities and preservation of cultural heritage in developing countries. It is administered through two schemes: Cultural Grant Assistance and Grant Assistance for Cultural Grassroots Projects.

  • White Paper on Development Cooperation 2015: PartIII Chapter2 Section1 Each Priority Issue 1-2(6) Culture and Sports (HTML / PDFOpen a New Window)

Type of Cultural Grant Assistance

Cultural Grant Assistance

  • Purpose: Promotion of culture and higher education, preservation of cultural heritage
  • Content: Provision of equipment, Construction/Rehabilitation of facilities
  • Eligible Recipient: National government agencies

Grant Assistance for Cultural Grassroots Projects

  • Purpose: Promotion of culture and higher education, preservation of cultural heritage
  • Content: Provision of equipment, Construction/Rehabilitation of facilities
  • Eligible Recipient: local authorities, NGOs, etc.
  • Grant limit: 10 million yen per project

Note: Cultural Grant Assistance was launched in FY 1975 to provide material support for the promotion of a wide variety of cultural and educational projects. In FY 2000 Japan expanded the scope of its cooperation by introducing Grant Assistance for Cultural Grassroots Projects, a system for detailed cooperation on small-scale projects, along with Grant Assistance for Cultural Heritage which enabled support for larger projects dealing with cultural heritage. In FY 2005 Cultural Grant Assistance and Grant Assistance for Cultural Heritage were merged into Cultural Grant Assistance, which provides support not only for projects for cultural heritage but also for projects to promote culture and higher education.

I. What is Cultural Grant Assistance?

Cultural Grant Assistance is a scheme whereby funds are granted to cover the cost of procurement, transportation and installation of equipment and construction or restoration of facilities used for various cultural and higher educational activities and the preservation of cultural heritage. From the start of this scheme in FY 1975 to FY 2016, Japan's Cultural Grant Assistance has supported a total of 1,432 projects, disbursing 67,317 million yen. The equipment and facilities provided to developing countries through Cultural Grant Assistance are used in a wide range of activities, including Japanese-language study and the study of Japan at various colleges and universities; promotion of sports, such as traditional Japanese martial arts like judo, etc.

Some examples of specific projects:

  • The Project for the Improvement of TV Broadcasting Equipment and TV Programs of Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (approx.71 million yen)
  • The Project for the Improvement of Equipment for Conservation of Archaeological Sanctuary of Pachacamac and Education of the Pachacamac Site Museum (150 million yen)
  • The Project for the Improvement of Equipment of the Sports Training Center of National Secretary of Sports (approx. 100 million yen)

Eligible Countries

Countries eligible for Cultural Grant Assistance are selected from ODA eligible countries and regions specified by the DAC list of ODA recipients.

Eligible Recipients

As aid is provided in the form of grants for the governments of recipient countries, recipients are national government agencies of recipient countries.

Application Process

The organization acting as the liaison for the recipient country (for example, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) must formulate target projects for that country and make a comprehensive application to the Embassy of Japan or the JICA overseas office.

Pamphlet in English (PDF) Open a New Window

II. What Is Grant assistance for Cultural Grassroots Projects (GCGP)?

Objectives

Grant assistance for Cultural Grassroots Project (GCGP) is meant to facilitate cultural exchanges and deepen friendship and mutual understanding between Japan and developing countries by providing non-profit organizations of those countries with support for procurement of equipment and construction of facilities to promote culture and higher education.

Eligible Recipients

The eligible recipients of GCGP are any type of non-profit organizations which are active at the grass-roots level in developing countries. These organizations include non-governmental organizations (NGOs), local authorities, research and higher education institutions. Under certain conditions, governmental institutions may also be eligible for assistance. Individuals and profit-making organizations are not eligible for GCGP.

Priority areas of GCGP

  • (1) GCGP directly supports the promotion of culture and higher education at the grass-roots level in each country, while also serving as cooperation which encourages understanding of and cultural exchanges with Japan.
    • Currently, one of the priority area of GCGP is sport fields as a part of the "Sport for Tomorrow" initiative.
  • (2) The following types of projects will not be eligible.
    • The projects that do not contribute to the economic and social development
    • The projects which do not benefit people at the grass-roots level
    • The projects that are intended for political or religious purposes
    • The projects that could be intended for military purpose
    • The projects which include the provision of luxury articles such as alcoholic beverages and cigarette

Available Funds and Implementation Period

The grant amount per project, in principle, is up to 10 million yen. The implementation period of the project is one year after the signing date of the grant contract.

Eligible Countries

Countries eligible for GCGP are selected from ODA eligible countries and regions specified by the DAC list of ODA recipients.

How to Apply

If your organization satisfies the conditions described above and you want to receive GCGP funds in order to implement a project for the promotion of culture or higher education in your country, you should submit an application form to the Japanese embassy or consulate in the said eligible country. The application form must be accompanied by a detailed breakdown of the budget for the project, a map showing the project site, a feasibility study for the project, estimates for the goods and services that will be purchased by the grant (from three different suppliers), the document introducing your organization (such as brochures), its regulations, and the annual budget of your organization.

Flow Chart of GCGP

  • Flow Chart of GCGP

When submitting your application form, please note the following points:

  • (1) In selecting projects for funding, the Japanese Government places a high priority on the impact and sustainability of the project. You must convince the Japanese embassy or consulate that your organization can manage the project well. A detailed description of the past achievements of your organization will therefore be helpful.
  • (2) The Japanese Government cannot provide funds for salaries and other operating expenses. The operating expenses from the implementation of the project shall therefore be independently financed by your organization. In order to convince the embassy that you can manage the project well, you must show that your organization has sufficient funds to cover running expense.
  • (3) Pro forma estimates must be submitted for each budget item so that the embassy or consulate can ensure value for money of the project. Whenever possible, you should submit estimates from three different suppliers.

Approval Procedures

The Japanese Government cannot support every project that is submitted. Funds are provided to appropriate projects after detailed examination and evaluation by the Japanese Government.

After a Japanese embassy or consulate receives an application form and accompanying documents from an applying organization, the embassy or consulate will take the following steps:

  • (1) Examination of the project: When the application is received, the project is examined by embassy or consulate staff, who pay particular attention to the objectives, impact, and the cost of the project. On this basis, potential projects for grant assistance are selected.
  • (2) Site visit: The embassy (or consulate) staff will visit the site of the potential project.
  • (3) Approval of the project: The embassy (or consulate) will send an application of the potential project to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will conduct further examination and approve the project.
  • (4) Grant Contract: The Japanese embassy (or consulate) and the recipient organization will then sign a Grant Contract. The Grant Contract contains the title and objectives of the project, the name of the recipient organization, the rights and obligations of each party, the maximum amount that will be provided for the implementation of the project, the submission date of interim/final reports, and the completion date of the project.
  • (5) Disbursement of funds: The recipient organization must submit a request for payment with the relevant documents in order to receive the funds.
  • (6) Implementation of the project: The grant should be used properly and exclusively for the purchase of the products and/or services specified in the application form of the approved project. Once the grant funds have been disbursed, implementation of the project is expected to proceed in a timely manner and in conformity with the agreed-upon timetable (in principle, within one year).
  • (7) Changes from the original plan: If the recipient organization needs to modify the project plan for any reason, it must consult with the embassy (or consulate) and seek its prior approval (both the consultation and approval must be in written form).
  • (8) Reports: An interim report during implementation and a final report at the end of the project period are required (in certain cases, the recipient organization may be asked to submit additional interim reports).
  • (9) Auditing: External auditing is required for all grass-roots grant assistance above 3 million yen.

Miscellaneous Requirements

  • (1) Prospective applicants should note that the following budget items cannot be financed: consumables, operating and maintenance costs of facilities and equipment, administrative costs of the recipient organization, the cost of accepting experts and training, the cost of hosting events.
  • (2) Funds received must be used exclusively for the implementation of the project. The Japanese embassy or consulate reserves the right to claim a refund of the grant if the funds are used for any purpose other than for the implementation of the project.
  • (3) It would be preferable if the recipient organization could manage the funds for the project separately, such as by opening an exclusive bank account, in order to facilitate auditing of the grant.

For further information please contact a Japanese embassy or consulate.