TOKYO – Japan’s prime minister on Wednesday signed a repayable financial aid agreement worth $70 million with the president of Ecuador aimed at modernizing the South American country’s energy matrix.
Shinzo Abe and Lenin Moreno also signed other joint agreements to strengthen bilateral ties and boost economic cooperation after a meeting in Abe’s office in Tokyo during the Ecuadorian leader’s week-long visit to Japan.
In a joint press statement, Abe said the agreements would help support the Moreno government’s efforts to implement reforms and also promote mutual investments and economic exchanges.
The $70 million loan will serve to partially finance a project aimed at transforming the energy matrix of Ecuador, and in particular for increasing the use of renewables such as geothermal energy to expand and modernize its power distribution network.
This is the first repayable financial aid Japan has offered to Ecuador in two decades, Abe said.
This initiative will be jointly executed by Ecuador’s Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy, the Inter-American Development Bank and the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
Moreno said that both countries “intend to revive the good relations they have maintained for 100 years.”
The two leaders also pledged to strengthen cooperation on trade and investment, according to the joint statement.
They also agreed to intensify bilateral links with initiatives, including bilateral visits by parliamentary delegations, exchange programs for students and mutual promotion of their respective cultures.
They also sealed a cooperation agreement to prevent natural disasters and mitigate their effects, within the framework of which, Japan will offer Ecuador assistance in building infrastructure able to withstand natural disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis.
Among other joint measures, Japan will also promote its high-definition television system and other information technology infrastructures in Ecuador.