Japan's Official Development Assistance White Paper 2009

(4) Information Disclosure and Transmission

As the source for ODA is citizen taxes, Japan is working to ensure transparency and to disclose and transmit information.

(a) Public Relations and Information Disclosure

MOFA and JICA have each established websites (Note 55) related to ODA in an aim to transmit accurate information in a timely manner. MOFA also issues the Kokusai Kyoryoku Newspaper (International Cooperation Newspaper) that contains the latest information regarding international cooperation on a monthly basis. The newspapers are distributed to educational institutions, libraries, and similar locations around the country. MOFA also publishes an email magazine that includes episodes written by officials on overseas diplomatic missions and JICA related personnel about their actual experiences in the fields.

As part of efforts to promote international cooperation efforts and dialogue with the public, symposiums with Japanese citizens named "Kokusai Kyoryoku ni Tsuite Kataro (Let's talk about International Cooperation)" are held three times per year. MOFA also holds the ODA On-Demand-Delivery Lecture, where MOFA staff visit elementary schools, junior and senior high schools, universities, local governments, NGOs, and similar venues to describe various topics on international cooperation.

Since FY1997, a series of regular programs have been televised for promoting the public's interest and understanding of international cooperation. In FY2008, "Chibana Kurara no Chikyu Supporter" (Global Support by Kurara Chibana) was televised by a TV TOKYO affiliate, covering images of Japanese aid-related personnel active in developing countries as well as images of local residents. The show also introduced the current situation in developing countries, necessity for aid, and results from Japanese projects.

Global Festa JAPAN is held annually around International Cooperation Day (Note 56) (October 6) as Japan's largest international cooperation event. Cosponsored by MOFA, JICA, and JANIC (Japan NGO Center for International Cooperation), the event is held on a Saturday and Sunday at Hibiya Park in Tokyo. Over 250 organizations including NGOs, international agencies and embassies of various countries present exhibits at the festival, and the festival receives about 96,000 visitors.


(55) MOFA: http://www.mofa.go.jp/mofaj/gaiko/oda; JICA: http://www.jica.go.jpother sitenew window; Plaza for International Cooperation http://www.apic.or.jp/plaza.

(56) On October 6, 1954, Japan's participation in the Colombo Plan was given cabinet approval, and economic cooperation began. October 6 was set as "International Cooperation Day" in 1987, via cabinet approval.

(b) Enhancing Dissemination of Information to the International Community

Japan employs various measures to ensure that awareness is raised overseas as well about the proactive international contributions made by Japan via ODA. Specifically, Japan has participated in interviews with the local press in addition to offering press releases at signings and handover ceremonies, attaching Japanese flag stickers (in English and Arabic) and the Japanese ODA logo (in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, and Portuguese) to goods supplied through assistance. Japanese overseas diplomatic missions have arranged visits to Japan's ODA project sites for the local press and created opportunities for the local media to gather information on Japan's cooperation projects. Furthermore, Japanese embassies disseminated information via various lectures, websites in English and local languages, and are creating pamphlets for publicity.