Japanese Ambassador Calls On Vice President

Mr Naoto Nikai, outgoing Japanese Ambassador, on Tuesday paid a courtesy call on Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur at his office to bid farewell after two year duty-tour of the country. The visit by Mr Nikai to the Flagstaff House was also aimed at strengthening bilateral relations. He said Japan would continue to deepen diplomatic ties with Ghana as well as provide constant support for the country. “Our relationship with Ghana is unwavering and Japan will forever relish its friendship with Ghana in particular and Africa at large whole,” he stressed. Vice President Amissah-Arthur said relations between Ghana and Japan pre-dates the country’s independence when Dr Noguchi visited Ghana to research into yellow fever. He said Ghana is happy to have strong bilateral relations over the years. He expressed the hope that the relations between the two nations would grow from strength to strength. Japan has had a long time partner of Ghana which dates back to 1927 when Dr Hideyo Noguchi, a renowned Japanese researcher on yellow fever disease arrived in Accra Ghana. Japan's Official Development Assistance to Ghana started in 1963 and from 1980 and 2000 an average of 10 billion yen (more than $100 million) annually was given as assistance making Japan the largest bilateral partner. In 2004, Japan granted a debt relief to Ghana worth about 105 billion yen (more than $1 billion), the largest amount exempted by a creditor country. In 2008, Japan became the world's largest bilateral assistance agency with an estimated $10.3 billion volume of aid.