The Japanese government will help the Philippines avert road mishaps especially during natural calamities.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) recently inked a three-year technical cooperation project for road disaster prevention and other countermeasures.

The project, which will run until 2025, aims to boost DPWH's capability to avoid, minimize and respond to damage caused by landslides, debris flow, and rock collapse, among others by implementing road disaster prevention and countermeasures.

JICA chief representative Takema Sakamoto said the country's geographical location makes it vulnerable to natural disasters.

Large-scale road disasters such as landslides occur in the country every year due to strong typhoons and earthquakes which in turn make public roads severely damaged and inaccessible.

Japan's expertise in disaster-proof high quality infrastructure will be shared to DPWH through capacity development activities on road disaster response and management including the development of hazard maps and Road Disaster Information System.

The project will be piloted in Central Visayas, Davao Region, and the Cordilleras.

'JICA continues to support the Philippines in enhancing quality infrastructure with the concept of sustainability, inclusion and resilience, in order to save lives, economic growth, poverty alleviation and improved quality of life for all,' Sakamoto said.

'This project can help preserve and prolong the asset lives of public works investments, thereby saving on financing requirements of the country as well,' he said.

The project is also expected to create jobs and promote investments as the country recovers from COVID.

JICA previously supported DPWH engineers' capacity development efforts on road slope protection technology for small-scale collapse or damage through a series of projects since 2007.

It has been helping the Philippines promote seamless mobility and better connectivity across the country through cooperation in roads and bridges.

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