Japan's Official Development Assistance White Paper 2006

Main Text > Part II ODA DISBURSEMENTS IN FISCAL YEAR 2005 > Chapter 2 Details about Japan's ODA > Section 2. Measures for Each of the Priority Issues > 1. Poverty Reduction > (3) Water and Sanitation

(3) Water and Sanitation

Meeting the MDG Drinking Water and Sanitation Target: The Urban and Rural Challenge of the Decade (2006)10 was compiled by WHO and UNICEF. According to this report, approximately 1.1 billion people in 2004 worldwide had no access to safe drinking water through such means as waterworks or wells, of which approximately 0.6 billion lived in Asia and approximately 0.3 billion in Africa. Furthermore, approximately 2.6 billion people around the world had no access to basic sanitation such as sewage systems, of which approximately 1.9 billion lived in Asia and approximately 0.5 billion in Africa.

    Water and sanitation is a serious issue that concerns all people's lives. According to the same report, under the present conditions the lives of approximately 1.6 million young children are lost each year. Reflecting this situation, the UN set an MDG target to "halve, by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation" and marks the period from 2005 to 2015 as the International Decade for Action Water for Life. For example, the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) devoted its 2004/2005 cycle to the themes of water, sanitation and human settlements. The results of the discussions were complied in the decision adopted by the Commission in April 2005. The UN "Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation" has been held five times since its inception in July 2004 up until March 2006. This board announced the Hashimoto Action Plan on the occasion of the Fourth World Water Forum (March 2006).

    Japan has been making major contributions in the area of water and sanitation. It has continuously been the top donor among the DAC countries since the 1990s. Over the five-year period from 2000 until 2004 it implemented US$4.6 billion in ODA, corresponding to 41% of bilateral donations.11

    On the occasion of the Third World Water Forum, which was held in March 2003 in Kyoto, Japan announced the Initiative for Japan's ODA on Water, which was to be accompanied by broad-ranging efforts regarding aid for the water sector. In addition, at the Fourth World Water Forum held in March 2006 in Mexico City, Japan announced the Water and Sanitation Broad Partnership Initiative (WASABI). This initiative is designed to bolster cooperation with international organizations, other donor countries, domestic and overseas NGOs and other concerned parties, thereby improving further the quality of aid in the areas of water and sanitation (see Chapter 2, Section 1 for details on WASABI).

    Chart II-12 Disbursements in the Water and Sanitation Sector by Purpose

Chart II-12 Disbursements in the Water and Sanitation Sector by Purpose

    With regard to strengthening international partnerships, Japan has been pursuing collaboration with the United States through the Clean Water for People Initiative: A United States-Japan Partnership to Provide Safe Water and Sanitation to the World's Poor. On the occasion of the Fourth World Water Forum both Japan and the United States held sessions and joint conferences and announced the development and achievements of the aforementioned partnership. Currently, the two countries are examining issues such as ways to attract private funds for regional water and sewerage infrastructures by combining yen loans from Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) with USAID investment guarantees. For this the four countries of Indonesia, India, the Philippines, and Jamaica have been chosen as pilot countries. In the Philippines, the Municipal Water Loan Financing Initiative (MWLFI) was implemented in March 2006 as the first project with funding that combines financing schemes from both Japan and the United States. In addition, examinations are underway on the Philippine Water Revolving Fund (PWRF), which is a new financing scheme that promotes private sector investment through more efficient and sustainable means. The lessons acquired through the establishment of MWLFI will be utilized in the new scheme.

    In FY2005 Japan provided approximately ¥201.9 billion worth of ODA for water and sanitation, consisting of approximately ¥23.5 billion in grant aid and approximately ¥178.3 billion in yen loans. Looking at the disbursements by objectives, the majority of provisions were for drinkable water and sanitation, which accounted for 39.9%, followed by afforestation at 8.6%, and disaster prevention at 8.6%. Viewed by regions, Asia comprised the greatest portion at 71.4%, followed by Latin America and the Caribbean at 19.2%, and the Middle East at 5.3%.

    Chart II-13 Disbursements in the Water and Sanitation Sector by Region

Chart II-13 Disbursements in the Water and Sanitation Sector by Region

    As a specific case example, the Government of Japan decided on the provision of yen loans for the Integrated Water Resources and Flood Management Project for Semarang in Indonesia. This project is intended to strengthen flood control and irrigation measures from a long-term and comprehensive standpoint in order to alleviate flood damage during the rainy season and water shortages during the dry season. As such, the project will involve floodways and rivers improvements, drainage system construction, and a multipurpose dam construction in Semarang, the capital of Central Java Province. In WASABI as well, Japan emphasizes the integrated management of water, including flood control and irrigation, in pursuit of sustainable use of water and promotes these comprehensive approaches.

    In terms of technical cooperation, Japan dispatched 147 experts to 36 countries in FY2005 in the areas of water supply and sewage, and instituted training for 1,053 trainees from 96 countries. As a result, the cumulative total has reached 477 dispatched experts and 3,368 trainees received since the announcement in FY2003 of the objectives in the Initiative for Japan's ODA on Water (about 1,000 people over a five-year period).