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国際機関援助 「倍加」を表明して削減とは

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Nov. 24, 2009)
Robbing Peter to pay Paul
国際機関援助 「倍加」を表明して削減とは(11月24日付・読売社説)

Though Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has promised the international community that Japan will boost its assistance to developing countries, the government has cut its support for international organizations that play key roles in aid projects. This is contradictory and unacceptable.
 途上国支援を強化すると国際公約しながら、鳩山首相が、支援で中核的役割を担う国際機関への援助を削減するのは、筋が通らない。

The amount of Japan's contributions to international organizations has been decreasing every year since the administration of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi moved to reduce official development assistance as part of its structural reform program that recognized no "sacred cows." The contributions have fallen by more than 40 percent from the peak year of fiscal 2001.
 国際機関向けの拠出金は、小泉政権が「聖域なき構造改革」の一環として政府開発援助(ODA)の削減に踏み切って以来、年々減っている。ピーク時の2001年度と比べて、4割以上も減少した。

Against this background, Hatoyama, in a speech at the U.N. General Assembly in September, vowed to double Japan's efforts to assist developing countries, in close cooperation with international organizations, raising expectations among those organizations for an increase in the amount of Japan's contributions to them.
 そうした中、鳩山首相は9月の国連演説で、国際機関と連携しながら途上国支援への努力を「倍加したい」と表明した。国際機関側に日本の拠出増に対する期待感が広がった。

But the actual amount of contributions, measured in terms of budget requests for fiscal 2010, already has fallen below that of fiscal 2009. In addition, some of the contributions have become a target of the budget scrutiny aimed at cutting wasteful spending in ministries' fiscal 2010 budget requests that is being conducted by the Government Revitalization Unit.
 ところが、実際の拠出額は、すでに来年度概算要求ベースで今年度を下回っている。さらに一部の拠出金は、行政刷新会議の事業仕分けの対象に挙げられた。

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Groups play role Japan can't

International organizations targeted in the government's panel's budget screening include the U.N. Development Program, the U.N. Human Settlements Program (UN-HABITAT) and the U.N. Volunteers--hardworking organizations that dispatch staff to Afghanistan and other countries.
 国連開発計画(UNDP)、国連人間居住計画(HABITAT)、国連ボランティア計画(UNV)などだ。いずれもアフガニスタンなどに職員を派遣し、実際に汗を流している組織である。

The government has pledged up to 5 billion dollars (about 450 billion yen) in aid to Afghanistan for nonmilitary purposes over a five-year period beginning this year. The aid is intended to provide vocational training for former Taliban soldiers and promote agricultural development and other worthy goals.
 政府は先に、アフガニスタンの民生支援のため5年間で最大50億ドル(約4500億円)を拠出することを表明した。旧タリバン兵士の職業訓練や農業開発などだ。

But it will not be easy for Japanese people to work in Afghanistan under the aid programs unless the security situation there improves. Japan's aid programs, therefore, will probably be carried out in the form of providing funds to the UNDP and other international organizations and having them dispatch their staff and volunteers to Afghanistan.
 だが、現地の治安状況が改善せず、日本人が現地で活動することは容易ではない。このため、日本の支援の実態は、UNDPなどに資金を渡し、各機関のスタッフや派遣ボランティアに活動してもらう形となる。

The government likely intends to secure a budget for funds to have international bodies carry out Japan's aid programs, separately from its contributions. Considering the current situation, in which Japan has no choice but to rely on international bodies to execute its aid programs, it does not make sense to slash contributions to international organizations, which are mainly used to defray their operating costs.
 そうした活動経費は、通常の拠出金とは別に予算を確保するつもりかもしれない。しかし、国際機関に頼らざるを得ない現状を思えば、主に国際機関の運営費に充てられる拠出金を大幅に切り詰めることが、適切とは思えない。

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Nation's reputation at stake

Japan has seen its reputation as a major contributor to international organizations dwindle. Some observers have linked the reduction in the amount of Japan's contributions to the dearth of Japanese executive staff in international organizations and their absence on such organizations' boards.
 日本は、各国際機関で上位拠出国の地位を喪失しつつある。各機関への幹部職員の送り込みが進まなかったり、執行理事会メンバーから日本が外れたりするのは、これまでの拠出金削減が影響しているとの指摘もある。

The budgets for international organizations, meanwhile, have ballooned. It is important for this country, as a contributor, to urge the organizations to keep a ceiling on their swelling budgets. Japan also should increase its efforts to increase the number of Japanese staff in international bodies.
 国際機関自体の予算は膨張傾向にある。拠出国として抑制を促すことは大切だ。国際機関における日本人職員の増員に向けた努力もいっそう強化すべきだ。

It goes without saying that Japan must pursue these two goals as well as contribute funds to international organizations. But we fear that cutting such contributions willy-nilly could lower Japan's profile in the international community.
 そうした資金拠出以外の取り組みを前提としてもなお、安易な削減は、国際社会における日本の発言力低下を招く恐れがある。

We do not want to see a situation in which the government attaches so much importance to budget screening to cut wasteful spending that Japan's diplomacy ends up being harmed.
 事業仕分けで予算カットに汲々(きゅうきゅう)とするあまり、日本の外交にマイナスの影響を与えるような結果になっては困る。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Nov. 24, 2009)
(2009年11月24日01時08分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2009-11-24 06:34 | 英字新聞

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