Asian Development Bank (ADB) Deputy Director General, Mr. Hideaki Iwasaki, and Delegation Hold Productive Courtesy Call with Governor Stevenson A. Joseph

Kolonia, Pohnpei: February 20, 2024 – Mr. Hideaki Iwasaki, Deputy Director General of the Asian Development Bank’s Pacific Department, led a high-level delegation in a courtesy call on Governor Stevenson A. Joseph. The welcoming reception extended by Governor Joseph set the stage for substantive discussions on ongoing and future collaborative efforts between the Asian Development Bank and Pohnpei.

Governor Joseph expressed appreciation for the extensive involvement of the Asian Development Bank in Pohnpei, emphasizing the multitude of activities undertaken by the ADB in the region. He remarked ADB has undertaken many activities in Pohnpei alone, and we are grateful for the support.

Mr. Iwasaki provided an overview of his responsibilities, covering 14 countries in the region, highlighting that this marked his second visit to Pohnpei. Accompanying Mr. Iwasaki were key members of the delegation, including Ganiga Ganiga, Transport Specialist; Maybelline Andon-Bing, Senior Country Officer; Jung Ho Kim, Principal Operations Coordination Specialist; Rustam Ishenalieve, Regional Head Operations Coordination; and Alan Semens, Operations Assistant.

Discussions during the courtesy call centered on ongoing projects in crucial sectors such as water, road infrastructure, energy, and education. The delegation and Governor Joseph engaged in productive dialogues about the progress of these initiatives and explored avenues for future assistance and collaboration.

Governor Joseph extended his gratitude for the assistance provided by the Asian Development Bank and assured the delegation of Pohnpei’s commitment to actively contribute to the successful implementation of ongoing and upcoming projects. He stated, “If the assistance does not benefit the people, we do not need it,” reiterating his position aligned with other donor partners.

Specific attention was given to road projects currently underway, with Governor Joseph highlighting the anticipated benefits for the people of Pohnpei. The energy sector was also emphasized, with Governor Joseph expressing concern about rising tariffs at Pohnpei Utilities Corporation (PUC). The delegation acknowledged the pressing nature of the energy sector and assured the Governor of their commitment to address these challenges collaboratively.

The courtesy call concluded with an atmosphere of collaboration and mutual understanding. Both the Asian Development Bank delegation led by Mr. Iwasaki and Governor Joseph expressed optimism about the continued partnership, ensuring that the assistance provided directly contributes to the well-being and development of the people of Pohnpei.

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