Japanese FM says all keen on successful “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” initiative

Dead Sea, Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Kono said that the talks held on Sunday at the Dead Sea on Japan’s “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” initiative were fruitful and constructive, stressing that all stakeholders are keen on the success of the initiative in achieving its goals.

In a press conference held following the 6th Ministerial-Level Meeting of the Four-Party Consultative Unit, the Japanese minister said the developments the initiative has seen include the start of the second stage of the Jericho Agro-Industrial Park (JAIP) and the operation of 12 companies that contributed to providing 100 jobs for the Palestinians.

In this regard, he called for more investments in the JAIP, which, he said, is full of opportunities.

He indicated that the participants agreed to facilitate the movement of Palestinian products through the King Hussein Bridge, to continue supporting the JAIP and to provide it with technology, and to develop logistical services on the King Hussein Bridge, including the establishment of a logistics zone on the Jordanian side of the bridge.

The meeting included Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Emad Najib Fakhouri, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al Malki and Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry Eli Cohen.

The ministers affirmed their unwavering commitment to the “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” initiative, which aims at the economic and social development of Palestine in a manner conducive to the achievement of peace in accordance with the two-state solution.

Following is the full text of the meeting’s final statement: 1. The 6th Ministerial-Level Meeting of the Four-Party Consultative Unit for the initiative of the “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” was held at Dead Sea, Jordan on 29th April, 2018. Mr. Taro Kono, Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Imad N. Fakhoury,Jordanian Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, Mr. EliyahuCohen, Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry and Dr. Riad Malki, Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriate(hereinafter referred to as “the Participants”) attended the meeting.

2. The Participants reaffirmed their strong commitment to this initiative, which aims to contribute, through creating job opportunities and involving Palestinian private sectors, to the development of a sustainable and viable Palestinian economy, conducive to a two-state solution.

3. The Participants also reaffirmed that the initiative aims to promote economic and social development in the region through cooperation among the four parties based onmutual trust. In this regard, the Participants confirmed that they will continue cooperating for and supporting the initiative, which is expected to contribute to creating a desirable environment for peace in the region.

4. The Participants welcomed the progress including the operation of 12 companies and inauguration of phase 2 in the Jericho Agro-Industrial Park (JAIP), a flagship project of the initiative, and expressed their hope for more companies to follow suit.

5. The Participants welcomed the commitment made by Mr.Taro Kono, Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs to improve the logistics and upgrade the initiative focusing on the ICT sector. In this regard, the Participants welcomed the progress of discussion among the parties with relation to the distribution system and movement of goods between JAIP and Allenby/King Hussein Bridge, including discussion on an exclusive road which will facilitate the access and movement of Palestinian trade to/from and via Jordan. The Participants welcomed the recent development that an in-principle understanding has been reached with respect to the overall alignment of the exclusive road and Japan’s intention to support its construction once its whole design and details have been prepared. The Participants also welcomed Japanese readiness to consider supporting projects to upgrade facilities at the King Hussein Bridge, including a logistics zone at the bridge.

6. Realizing the need to coordinate among the parties on logistics along the road and at Allenby/King Hussein Bridge, the Participants decided to establish a four party working level meeting on logistics for smoother movement of goods.

7. The Participants stressed the importance of reliable and adequate water and electricity supply to JAIP. In this regard, the Participants welcomed the approval by the Israeli side to drill a deep well in Jericho to increase water supply to JAIP with backing from Japan.

8. The Participants welcomed support from other donors including Germany, The Netherlands, Office of Quartet and other organizations for improving border facilities at King Hussein Bridge.

9. The Participants reaffirmed the significance of JAIP for helping realize the objectives of the “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” initiative, and the importance of convening a high-level political meeting at an appropriate time in the future to consolidate the progress of the JAIP project.

Source: Jordan News Agency