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Japan's official development assistance: recent issues and future directions


  • Masahiro Kawai

    (Institute of Social Science, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan)

  • Shinji Takagi

    (Independent Evaluation Office, International Monetary Fund, Washington, DC, USA and Faculty of Economics, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan)


The paper discusses recent issues and possible future directions of Japan's official development assistance (ODA). While Japan remains one of the world's largest donor nations, given its prolonged economic stagnation and mounting public sector debt, the Japanese government is under increasing public pressure to reduce ODA budgets and to use ODA in more explicit pursuit of Japan's own economic and political interests. Internationally, Japan continues to attract criticism for its emphasis on infrastructure-related projects and for its restrained willingness to participate in multilateral partnerships. This paper argues that Japan can meet these domestic and international challenges by developing a coherent national strategy for ODA, broadly designed to enhance effectiveness, accountability and transparency. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Masahiro Kawai & Shinji Takagi, 2004. "Japan's official development assistance: recent issues and future directions," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(2), pages 255-280.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jintdv:v:16:y:2004:i:2:p:255-280 DOI: 10.1002/jid.1074

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Oliver Morrissey, 2000. "Assessments of Assessing Aid: introduction," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 371-373, April.
    2. Finn Tarp, 2006. "Aid and Development," Discussion Papers 06-12, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
    3. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1999. "The World Bank at the Millennium," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(459), pages 577-597, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Séverine Blaise, 2009. "Japanese Aid as a Prerequisite for FDI : The Case of Southeast Asian Countries," Finance Working Papers 22767, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
    2. Kimura, Hidemi & Todo, Yasuyuki, 2010. "Is Foreign Aid a Vanguard of Foreign Direct Investment? A Gravity-Equation Approach," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 482-497, April.
    3. Céline Azémar & Rodolphe Desbordes & Jean-Louis Mucchielli, 2007. "Do tax sparing agreements contribute to the attraction of FDI in developing countries?," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 14(5), pages 543-562, October.
    4. Hong-Min Chun & Elijah N. Munyi & Heejin Lee, 2010. "South Korea as an emerging donor: Challenges and changes on its entering OECD|DAC," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(6), pages 788-802.
    5. KIMURA Hidemi & TODO Yasuyuki, 2007. "Is Foreign Aid a Vanguard of FDI? A Gravity-Equation Approach," Discussion papers 07007, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    6. Kasuga, Hidefumi & Morita, Yuichi, 2012. "Aid effectiveness, governance and public investment," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 514-521.
    7. Gonzalez, Eduardo T. & Mendoza, Magdalena L., "undated". "Governance in Southeast Asia: Issues and Options," Discussion Papers DP 2002-07, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    8. Norbert Palanovics, 2006. "Quo vadis Japanese ODA? New developments in Japanese aid policies," Asia Europe Journal, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 365-379, September.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation


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