Ashgabat, 5 March 2021 – The Government of Japan and UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS) have officially launched a new project aimed at strengthening the healthcare system of Turkmenistan through the delivery of medical equipment and supplies to the country. The project marks the first engagement for UNOPS in Turkmenistan. The signing ceremony of the Exchange of Notes for the project entitled “Enhancing the Healthcare System through the Provision of Medical Equipment in Turkmenistan” took place at the UN House.
Ms. Christine Weigand, UN Resident Coordinator a.i, acting on behalf of UNOPS, and H.E. Mr. Yamamoto Hiroyuki, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Turkmenistan signed the Notes in the presence of H.E. Mr. Nurmuhammet Amannepesov, Minister of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, and media representatives.
In their opening statements, the speakers, including Minister of Health and Medical Industry, stressed the importance of this project for Turkmenistan in responding to the health impacts posed by infectious diseases.
“I strongly believe that the partnership between the UN, the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of Japan will contribute to enhancing the health system of Turkmenistan and promote sustainable recovery from the impact of the global pandemic”, noted Ms. Christine Weigand, UN Resident Coordinator a.i..
Moreover, Ms. Freya von Groote, Director of the UNOPS Multi-Country Office covering Turkmenistan, emphasized UNOPS’ commitment to support the development efforts of the government based on its mandate and expertise in the areas of project, procurement and infrastructure management, and in close collaboration with the rest of the UN Country Team.
The Grant Aid Project for “Enhancing the Healthcare System through the Provision of Medical Equipment”, the total amount of US$ 2.8 million will focus on the procurement and provision of medical equipment and supplies to selected hospitals, as well as the provision of the appropriate capacity development, logistics and management support.
This project will be delivered as part of the implementation of the UN-Turkmenistan Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework 2021-2025, national Country Preparedness and Response Plan, and Immediate Socio-Economic Response Plan to Acute Infectious Disease Pandemic, endorsed at the highest level in 2020. Accordingly, the UN Country Team, including UNOPS, has been working closely with the national stakeholders and international development partners in the implementation of these Plans. /// UN Turkmenistan
Support by the Government of Japan to Enhance the Healthcare System of Turkmenistan through the Provision of Medical Equipment (Implementation of the Grant Aid Project in coordination with United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS))
On March 5th, 2021, in the UN Building, the Exchange of Notes was held between the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Turkmenistan, Mr. YAMAMOTO Hiroyuki and the UN Resident Coordinator a.i., UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan Ms. Christine WEIGAND in the framework of the Grant Aid Project for “Enhancing the Healthcare System through the Provision of Medical Equipment”, the total amount of which is 298 million Japanese yen (around 3 million US dollars).
Through this cooperation, the Government of Japan, in coordination with UNOPS, will provide medical equipment including ultrasound and mobile X-Ray machines to Turkmenistan medical institutions. As a result, it is expected that the implementation of this Project will promote the healthcare system of Turkmenistan including the fight against the infection diseases as well as contribute to the stability and socio-economic development of Turkmenistan.
Your Excellency Mr. Nurmukhammet AMANNEPESOV, Minister of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan,
Ms. Christine WEIGAND, UN Resident Coordinator a.i., UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan,
Ms. Freya von GROOTE, Director of UNOPS Multi-Country Office in Austria,
Ladies and gentlemen,
I’m very glad that we could gather here today to hold this Signing Ceremony of the Exchange of Notes for our Grant Aid Project for “Enhancing the Healthcare System through the Provision of Medical Equipment”. First of all, let me express my sincere gratitude to all representatives of the UN Office in Turkmenistan for providing continuous support in organizing today’s event.
In the framework of this project, amounting to around 3 million US dollars, the Government of Japan is going to provide medical equipment such as ultrasound and mobile X-Ray machines to enhance the medical and healthcare system of Turkmenistan.
Currently, the international community is facing a common threat – the worldwide pandemic COVID-19. In such conditions, Japan is actively cooperating with the international community in the field of healthcare, in particular, by providing the medical equipment and the antivirus drug “Avigan”, produced by a Japanese pharmaceutical company, to international partners, as well as carrying out online exchanges of views with Japanese medical specialists to prevent the spread of coronavirus infection.
During the G7 Leaders’ videoconference, which took place on February 19, Prime Minister of Japan Yoshihide SUGA stated that vaccines would play a critical role in containing the spread of infection and that it would be important to ensure fair access to vaccines and to accelerate their distribution. Prime Minister SUGA also emphasized the importance of the COVAX facility and Japan’s commitment to a new financial contribution of two hundred million US dollars to the COVAX mechanism of supporting developing countries.
The Government of Japan has been making comprehensive contributions to the fight against COVID-19 at various levels. As for cooperation with Turkmenistan, I would like to note that Japan International Cooperation Agency “JICA” has held 3 online seminars in the field of countermeasures against coronavirus infection and representatives from the Ministry of Health and other medical institutions of Turkmenistan took part in those seminars. After the completion of the medical equipment supply to Turkmenistan under this project, I’m planning to visit local hospitals to meet with medical workers to discuss possibilities of further cooperation in the medical and healthcare field.
Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to stress that based on the visit to Turkmenistan of then Prime Minister ABE in 2015, as well as the working visit to Japan of the esteemed President of Turkmenistan BERDIMUHAMEDOV in 2019, Japanese – Turkmen relations are dynamically developing in various spheres, including politics, economy, culture, and education. We can give many examples of successful cooperation between our countries, such as the “Central Asia + Japan” Dialogue, the construction of plants collaborated with Japanese companies which diversify Turkmen natural gas industry, as well as a sharp increase in the number of Turkmen students learning Japanese.
We are very pleased to add, to such successful cooperation, this large-scale project in the field of healthcare. In the future, we would like to consider various opportunities for cooperation aiming at capacity building in the healthcare field.
In conclusion, I would like to express my sincere hope that this project will enhance the development of our friendly bilateral relations and will deepen cooperation between Japan and the UN.
Thank you for your attention! /// nCa, 8 March 2021 (in cooperation with Embassy of Japan in Turkmenistan)