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Japan To Strengthen IT Support To Asia: Mori

June 8, 2000

TOKYO (Nikkei)--Japan will strengthen its cooperation with Asian economies in four fields -- information/communications, personnel training/exchange, trade/investment and currency stabilization, Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori said Thursday.

"The Japanese government has not changed its policy of taking issues in Asia seriously," Mori said. He added that he has inherited the spirit of affection toward Asia shown by the late Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi, who did all he could to help Asian economies recover from the recent economic crisis.

Speaking at a banquet for the Future of Asia conference, he said he intended to speak up for Asian nations as much as possible at the Group of Eight summit in Okinawa next month.

Regarding cooperation in the information technology field, the prime minister announced Japan's support package would consist of four pillars to help developing nations in Asia benefit from the ongoing IT revolution. Japan will provide support for creating IT policies and systems, personnel assistance centering on IT training and education, support for establishing information/communications infrastructure and promotion of IT use, Mori said.

Mori said Japan will disclose the assistance package at the G-8 summit.

The two-day conference is sponsored by Nihon Keizai Shimbun Inc. and runs through Friday. Political and business leaders from 14 economies in the Asian and Pacific region are attending the conference to discuss the challenges they face toward the new century.

(The Nihon Keizai Shimbun Friday morning edition)

Titles of speakers, names of companies, etc., were correct as of the time when the forum was held.