His Excellency President Benigno Aquino III and Japanese Ambassador Makoto Katsura led the inauguration of Phase II of the Project for Improvement of Flood Forecasting and Warning System in the Pampanga and Agno River Basins last Fri day, April 8 in Pangasinan.
The grant aid amounting to 376 million yen (approximately 154 million pesos) from the Government of Japan covers the Agno River basin. The project aims to improve the existing gauging stations and telecommunication facilities for fast data transmission of observed data to ensure the issuance of timely and reliable warnings to flood-threatened communities.
Phase I of this project covers disaster mitigation in the Pampanga River basin area and was inaugurated last March 18, 2009, funded by another grant aid from Japan worth 779 million yen (approximately 312 million pesos). By the combination of Phase I & II, the flood mitigation system in the flood-prone areas in Central Luzon will be significantly improved. The project will contribute to enhanced protection of life and property of the Filipino people.
In his speech, Ambassador Katsura mentioned, “With the completion of the Phase 2 of this project, we believe that the disaster preparedness and prevention will be further enhanced contributing to enhanced protection of life and property of the people of Central Luzon.”
This project reaffirms the continued commitment of Japan to extend cooperation in minimizing threats of disasters. This project is expected to further foster a strategic partnership between the two countries towards the future.
Japan , as the top donor of ODA to the Philippines as well as a disaster-prone country itself , has supported the Philippines' disaster mitigation efforts by sharing its experiences and lessons learned from the past natural disasters. Japanese ODA loans enabled the Philippines to implement various projects of flood control and warning systems such as flood mitigation facilities of the Pasig-Marikina river, Mangahan floodway and the flood forecasting and warning system in Bicol and Cagayan basins.