Philippines, Japan remain partners in disaster risk reduction
Bebot Sison Jr., Cecille Suerte Felipe (The Philippine Star) - March 1, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) kicked off yesterday Fire Prevention Month with Japanese Ambassador Kazuhide Ishikawa attending the event at the Quezon City Memorial Circle.

“Japan will continue to be an active partner of the Philippines in disaster risk reduction and management,” Ishikawa said.

“Japan and the Philippines are prone to disasters so it is important for the two countries to share experiences on how to cope with fires and other emergencies and to strengthen our cooperation to mitigate the impacts of such events,” Ishikawa added.

Ishikawa and BFP chief Director Ariel Barayuga signed the grant contract amounting to more than $240,000 (P10 million) for the provision of emergency vehicles in 11 disaster-prone areas in the Visayas funded under the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects.

Under the grant, the Japanese government will donate seven ambulances, 10 fire trucks and one rescue vehicle to select local government units to beef up their firefighting capabilities.

“We hope these initiatives will help these municipalities be equipped to meet their emergency needs,” Ishikawa said.

“At least 1.63 million people in the targeted areas in the Visayas are expected to benefit from this project,” he added.

Last year, Japan donated 20 emergency vehicles to municipalities affected by Typhoon Yolanda.

The Japanese ambassador commended the BFP for raising public awareness on fire safety and its contribution to disaster risk reduction and management.

Under the project, the BFP will be able to improve its response during emergencies.

The event was participated in by BFP personnel, fire volunteers, students and non-government organizations.

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