The Japanese Language Speech Contest held at the Tajik State Institute of Languages last week

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The number of visitors to Japan in Tajikistan is reportedly increasing year by year, including those who have visited Japan under the Japanese Government's study-abroad programs and JICA's training scheme, and students who have learned in Japan through cooperation between Tajik universities and Japanese universities. Furthermore, more and more people are becoming interested in Japan through Japanese food, culture, animation, etc. The number of people learning Japanese is increasing accordingly, JICA Tajikistan Office notes.

The Embassy of Japan in Dushanbe has reportedly been conducting activities to promote exchanges between the two countries, such as introducing Japanese culture and study-abroad programs, and the JICA Tajikistan Office has been dispatching volunteers "Japanese Language Teachers" to Tajikistan since 2010 under its volunteer scheme.

In Tajikistan, Japanese language classes are offered at the Tajik State Institute of Languages, Russian -Tajik Slavic University, and the Hotam PV, and there is also a private language school in Dushanbe.

The Japanese Language Speech Contest is held every year as an opportunity for these educational institutions’ students to present the outputs of their studies. Depending on their level of Japanese language skill, applicants may either be in the “Declamation Category” which recites from existing Japanese publications (readings, poems, etc.), or in the "Speech Category” which expresses their thoughts and opinions. This year, 25 applicants from eligible educational institutions entered the “Declamation Category” and 8 applicants entered the “Speech Category”.

There is a program for the students who do not participate in the contest but would like to perform Japanese songs, dances, and other performances.

The top winners of the “Speech Category” will be eligible to participate in the "Japanese Language Speech Contest in Central Asia" and the "Japanese Language Speech Contest in Moscow."

“We hope that the number of Tajik citizens interested in understanding and getting to know Japan through the Japanese language will increase, and this contest will become a cornerstone of friendly relations between Tajikistan and Japan in the future,” JICA Tajikistan Office says in its press release.

JICA began its technical cooperation with Tajikistan in 1993 by inviting Tajik officials to gain knowledge and experience on governance and macroeconomics development. As of March 2020, the total number of participants to JICA’s Knowledge Co-Creation Programs, formerly called the Training Programs, has exceeded 2380 people. JICA Office was established in 2006 in Tajikistan and since then various Grant Financial Assistance and Technical Cooperation projects have been implemented more dynamically, aiming at improving the living standard of Tajik people for the sectors such as agriculture and rural development, water supply, health, transport, energy, capacity building as well as SME promotion. JICA’s cumulative investment portfolio in Tajikistan in all sectors comprises 44 projects amounting to more than 418.5 million USD (94.66 million USD for Technical Cooperation and 324 million USD for Grant Assistance), including 14 ongoing projects.

Source: Asia-Plus