INTRODUCTION: Iraq's Vice President is on official visit to Japan -- where he's expected to be offered another billion-dollar (U.
INTRODUCTION: Iraq's Vice President is on official visit to Japan -- where he's expected to be offered another billion-dollar (U.S.) loan, according to news reports from Tokyo. Mr. Taha Muhiddin Maarouf arrived in the Japanese capital on Thursday (20 January) on a five-day visit to discuss economics, trade, cultural exchange and the Middle East situation.
SYNOPSIS: He began hi visit with talks with Prime Minister Takeo Fukuda at the Akasaka Palace in Tokyo. the reported billion-dollar credit was expected to be finalised by an exchange of documents between Japanese Foreign Minister, Iichiro Hatoyama and Iraqi Foreign Trade Minster Mr. Azzawi, a member of the visiting delegation. This follows the signing of an economic and technical co-operation agreement between the two countries in 1974. But Japanese Foreign Ministry officials declined to name the Iraqi projects to be covered by the credit loan. Under the 1974 agreement, Japan has already committed a billion dollars worth of credit -- a quarter of this in yen loans and the rest of differed payment facilities. About half of the latter has already been taken by Iraq for a fertiliser factory.
The Iraqi Vice-President and Mr. Fukuda adjourned to the Japanese Prime Minister's official residence before Mr. Maarouf went on to lunch with Emperor Hirohito. The Vice-President was accompanied by a ten-man delegation, including his Foreign Trade and Foreign Ministers, and the Governor of the Bank of Iraq. They were scheduled to have extensive talks with government economic experts and business leaders.