Daily Archives: March 28, 2015

Japan Extends Financial Aid for South Sudan Refugees

Out of some 700 thousand refugees hosted by Ethiopia, some 250 thousands are from the war torn and collapsing South Sudan who traveled a harsh journeys to cross borders and get safe shelters from the agonies of war.

Following events, the Japan government extended some 11.8 million dollars to help refugees and hosting communities in Gambella Regional State on Wednesday.

Representatives of UNHCR, WFP and WHO present at the Japan Ambassador’s residence, located off the Africa Avenue, have expressed the timeliness of the support Japan has availed for the cause. Housed in 24 camps across the country, Ethiopia is named the highest recipient of refugees mostly from South Sudan, Somalia and Eritrea.

The officials also indicated that the donation from Japan would help facilitate the living conditions in the refugee camps, food supply conditions and control of communicable diseases. Mohamed Diab, country director of WFP, said that Japan has extended five million dollars to provide food assistance for some 240 thousand refugees in the region.

UNHCR on its part received USD 5.8 million for the construction of new camp, after flood caused a serious damage to the Leitchuor camp in Gambella where 50 thousand South Sudanese refugees were sheltered.

According to Bornwell Kantande, deputy representative of UNHCR, the new Jewi refugee camp, 18km out of the town of Gambella, is to be built soon to relocate the flood affected refugees. Kantande told The Reporter that the financial assistance will also be used to support the hosting communities near by the camps.

Both the refugees and hosting communities will benefit from pipe water, schooling, health and other facilities. According to Kantande, five years ago the total number of South Sudanese refugees in Gambella was 10 thousand. And currently, the mass exodus of refugees is witnessed on daily basis involving mainly of women and children.

South Sudanese media reports that the influx of refugees seem unlikely to halt in the near future following the failure of the warring nations to strike a peace deal cessation fighting in South Sudan. In addition, the recent drastic fall in the price of oil in the international market is feared to exacerbate situations in the new born and war torn nation.

Kazuhiro Suzuki, Ambassador of Japan to Ethiopia expressed concerns over the large number of causalities and the conditions of refugees due to the clashes in South Sudan. “I call on all relevant parties in South Sudan to stop the violence and resolve the situation through dialogue. Children and women from South Sudan and the people of Gambella have really had enough,” the ambassador said.

Appliance maker set to expand at home and abroad (China Daily)

Huaqiang Appliance Group Co Ltd, a major household appliance manufacturer in Guangdong province, plans to further increase its competitiveness through innovation in the years to come.

“Innovation is the key to Huaqiang’s expansion at home and abroad, and the group is making great efforts to develop quality products to boost its sales,” said Lu Xizhang, chairman of the company, which is based in Zhanjiang.

The company plans to invest more than 80 million yuan ($12.8 million) to help digitalize its management and production equipment and upgrade technology for its second-phase development that began last year.

Huaqiang signed cooperation contracts with Guangdong Ocean University and Lingnan Normal University in recent years.

“Huaqiang will accelerate its research and development for more high-tech products by cooperating with local universities and research institutes,” Lu said.

The group is investing more than 10 million yuan annually in R&D and importing new technologies and equipment to upgrade its production, Lu said.

Huaqiang spent more than 30 million yuan recruiting and training talented researchers in the past years, he added.

To boost sales, the company also plans to increase its cooperation with e-commerce giants such as Alibaba and JD.com, Lu said. He added that it would couple traditional sales channels with e-commerce platforms to increase its market presence at home and abroad.

The group will focus on Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, Africa and South America, regions Lu said had great potential in the near future.

Lu added that his company would further expand its global presence by grasping opportunities brought about by the country’s One Belt, One Road initiative.

“The initiative will certainly benefit our overseas expansion, as Zhanjiang has already established close ties with the nations along the ancient Maritime Silk Road,” Lu said.

Last year, the company’s exports amounted to about $8 million, with sales to the Middle East, Europe, Asia and South America recording rapid growth.

The company sold 406.37 million yuan worth of products in 2014, up 11 percent from 2013.

It established more than 3,000 sales and service outlets nationwide.

Huaqiang was established in 1988 and has developed into one of the three largest household appliance manufacturers in the country.

The company mainly produces electric rice cookers, electric pressure cookers, electric kettles, cooker hoods, gas cookers and electric water heaters.

Huaqiang has won several domestic and international prizes for its products over the years.

zhengcaixiong@chinadaily.com.cn

(China Daily 03/28/2015 page18)