On behalf of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), I would like to express my sincerest appreciation for your continued support and understanding. I have been appointed the new Governor of JBIC, replacing Akira Kondoh, who served as Governor until June 21, 2018. JBIC's role is constantly changing in response to the international political and economic conditions surrounding Japan and the various needs of Japanese companies. Continuing our efforts to keep up with our clients' changing needs, we will carry out our responsibilities to contribute to the Japanese economy as well as the international economy and society by capitalizing on our human resources, financial instruments, global network and policy recommendation capacity as a public financial institution.
Looking at recent political and economic trends in the world, the global economy is on a moderate recovery path, but on the other hand, there are new changes to the form of international cooperation which were considered commonplace. This has been demonstrated by the weakening of solidarity and unity among the G7 nations during the summit in Canada in June 2018 and the first-ever U.S.-North Korea summit held earlier in the same month. In view of such a situation, when forecasting the future global economy, it is required to pay close attention to trends in economies and trade issues of emerging countries particularly in Asia, as well as the impact of tensions caused by the geo-economic approaches taken by countries around the world. Under such circumstances, the international environment surrounding Japan is changing significantly.
In the natural resources sector, from the perspective of Japan's energy security, it is important to structure projects for resource development, aiming to secure a stable supply of energy and mineral resources in the medium to long term, as well as to build and develop the LNG market through support for the establishment of LNG and gas value chains in Asia. Japanese industries are accelerating their move to seek earnings opportunities outside Japan due to declining domestic demand as a result of a fast-aging population with a low birthrate. For Japan's strong future economic growth, it is important to promote investment in quality infrastructure overseas that is safe, economically efficient (low life-cycle cost), and is expected to contribute to the self-sustaining growth of the countries where such infrastructure will be built and operated. Japanese companies can capitalize on their competitive technologies and expertise in quality infrastructure development. Amid the progress in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it is an urgent task to combine technologies across different sectors to generate new products and businesses, or create new technologies through innovation and roll them out worldwide.
Furthermore, even as the common understanding of the principles of international cooperation is diminishing, climate change is an urgent issue of global concern. It is important to coordinate international efforts to prevent global warming. There are increasing expectations not only for the consideration of the environmental and social impact of each project, but also for promoting projects that are expected to help protect and improve the global environment, such as those using Japan's advanced environmental technology and renewable energy sources.
JBIC's mission is to provide financial support for large projects involving country risks and requiring long-term financing—such as infrastructure and resource development projects—in addition to responding to global financial instability in accordance with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation Act. At the same time, JBIC has a principle of supplementing the financial transactions implemented by private-sector financial institutions. Amid a changing international environment in various fields, JBIC is increasingly required to provide future-oriented support in a more proactive and flexible manner by expanding its existing financial support framework in response to trends in the fields of diplomacy, industry and finance, with the aim of contributing to the sound development of Japan and the international economy and society.
As a Japanese policy-based financial institution, JBIC will further support Japanese companies in expanding overseas while taking account of the needs and expectations of the Japanese government and industrial and financial communities.
Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC)
Tadashi Maeda, Governor