The Japan International Cooperation Agency is planning to open an office in Baghdad, citing improved security situation in the Iraqi city.
According to JICA officials, the organization plans to shift some of its operations from its office in the northern city of Arbil to the proposed office in Iraq’s capital city. This is expected to bolster Japan’s support to Iraq as announced by JICA President Sadako Ogata, The Japan Times reports.
The opening of JICA’s Baghdad office could boost Japanese investors’ confidence to take advantage of the oil and reconstruction businesses in Iraq, the newspaper adds.
JICA’s Arbil office, which opened in March 2009, will continue its operations and allow other staff members to come to Baghdad as necessary. JICA officials in Arbil have been travelling to Baghdad to directly work with Iraqi officials on JICA loan projects.
Masaaki Matsushima, head of the JICA Arbil office, has started living in the Iraqi capital and planned to stay there once the new Iraqi government is officially formed.
“We need to increase opportunities to directly meet Iraqi people in Baghdad,” Matsushima said.