Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA) has welcomed Akihiko Hoshino as its new Resident Representative after the departure of Nobuhiro Kumagai who went back to Japan last December. JICA facilitates and implements the Official Development Assistance for developing countries such as Botswana through technical cooperation .This is done through dispatching of experts and acceptance of trainees. The Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteer (JOCV) program was incepted in 1965 by the Government of Japan as an organization under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan to provide official technical assistance to developing countries.
This assistance takes the form of Japanese volunteers working directly with the people of the host countries to transfer skills and knowledge. Currently 20 Japanese volunteers are engaged in different ministries and institutions such as Directorate of Public Service Management, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism. JICA also sends 40 officials from various government departments to Japan every year for technical training.
In 1992, the JOCV program started in Botswana and became part of the overall technical assistance program of JICA when the JICA Botswana Office was established in the same year. Since then, JICA Volunteers have been dispatched to many different government departments, statutory institutions, line agencies, and NGOs in many different parts of Botswana to undertake various technical assignments.
Hoshino, 50, boasts of vast experience in the JICA objectives having previously worked as Director, Program Division back in his country before coming to Botswana. He has also worked as Deputy Resident Representative at JICA Malawi office, Assistant Resident Representative in Papua Guinea. He has also served as JICA volunteer in Zambia and Liberia. Hoshino holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Osaka Prefecture University in Japan and Master of Economics from Kobe University.