Japan has long been a “steadfast supporter of Tajikistan, contributing tens of millions of dollars to the country’s development through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).” The Japanese government, through its Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), is also funding the “Border Management Project” – an initiative to support the Tajik Government in controlling its national border with Afghanistan, UNDP Tajikistan reports.
The project aims to both secure the length of the Tajik-Afghan border and facilitate cross-border trade. It was initially launched in 2015, and will run until 2025. Since its launch the parties have constructed a new border checkpoint at Langar, and modernized the old checkpoints at Khumrogi and Shogun.
Toshihiro Aiki, Japan’s ambassador to Tajikistan, recently commented: “We have had favorable relationships with the government of Tajikistan since its first steps of independence. Japan supports Tajikistan in many ways, considering strategic aspects, especially in light of the changed political landscape involving the whole Eurasian continent. There are some challenges that not only Tajikistan but most of the countries face.”
Given the problem of drug trafficking at the Tajik-Afghan border, the initiative is also supporting Tajikistan in disrupting illicit activities, protecting border communities from the harmful effects of the drug trade.