Japan has promised to help strengthen the IT skills of Filipinos, enabling them to be more competitive in the job market. Japan representative Takahiko Shiba recently handed over a PHP196m (USD3.8m) check to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to fund the Personal Computers for Public Schools Project Phase 5 in the Visayas and Mindanao, which has 380 school beneficiaries. Shiba said Japan will continue to support IT education in the Philippines through the project, as it is a vital tool in the global economy. DTI Davao regional director Maria Belenda Ambi said the Philippines’ ICT illiteracy should be addressed so that the country will be able to compete on a global platform. The project was funded under Japan’s Non-Project Grant Aid-Counter Value Fund in partnership with the Department of Education and the DTI. Japan has distributed about 64,000 computers to 5,400 schools since 2001.
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