The Government of Japan has agreed to provide a grant of Japanese Yen 208 million (approximately Rs. 287 million) for implementation of the second phase of the Human Resources Development Scholarship Programme. The objective of this programme is to support human resources development by providing opportunities for the Government officials to undergo Masters Degree Programmes at higher educational institutions in Japan. The programme will also assist to provide higher contribution from the public officers for the development of social and economic sectors of the country and to strengthen the bilateral relationship between the two countries.
Under this scholarship programme, 15 long term scholarships will be provided to Sri Lanka in each year from 2011 - 2014, to pursue Post Graduate Studies in Japanese universities in the fields of Public Policy and Public Finance, Public Administration, Regional Development and Poverty Alleviation, and Macro and Development Economics. The candidates will be selected from the relevant line Ministries, Departments and Agencies based on a competitive selection process. As a first phase, the Government of Japan has granted Japanese Yen 229 million (approximately Rs. 279 million) to cover the education and living cost of 15 scholars who had qualified in 2010 and currently studying at the Japanese universities under this programme. The Government of Japan is the main contributor of the human resources development in the public sector in Sri Lanka and, Japan has provided annually around 160 short and long term foreign training programmes to Sri Lanka through the facilitation of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
An Exchange of Notes between the two Governments and a Grant Agreement between the Government of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the JICA for the implementation of the Human Resources Development Scholarship Programme were signed at the Ministry of Finance and Planning. Dr. P. B. Jayasundera, Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Planning on behalf of the Government of Sri Lanka and Kunio Takahashi Ambassador of Japan in Sri Lanka on behalf of the Government of Japan and Akira Shimura, Chief Representative of JICA on behalf of the JICA.