MIKASA Corporation, a famous Japanese sports goods manufacturing company, is to invest more than $5 million in building a ball production factory in Cambodia’s Koh Kong Special Economic Zone (KKSEZ) and plans to start construction early next year, according to officials.
Mikasa produces balls for sports such as volleyball, basketball and football, according to its website.
Hiroshi Suzuki, chief executive of the Business Research Institute for Cambodia, which provides economic analysis and research, said the company will invest $5.12 million in the construction of a factory in the Koh Kong Special Economic Zone,
“The company will start construction early next year and it will be completed by October,” Suzuki said.
“The company is very famous in the sporting goods industry, and their products have been used in international matches. It is good for Cambodia,” he said.
According to Suzuki, the plant will produce all the parts and accessories for the balls for export back to Thailand where they will be assembled into the final product.
Bun Leut, Koh Kong provincial governor, also confirmed that the company has been in talks with the KKSEZ to start construction on the plant.
“I have not met with the company about the project, but I was told by the owner of the KKSEZ that Mikasa will start construction next January,” he said.
Cambodia has seen an increase in Japanese companies setting up operations in recent months.
Most recently, Yazaki, a car electronics and instrument plant launched operations in the KKSEZ, Aeon Mall has invested over $200 million in Phnom Penh and electronics firm Minebea has made a $60 million investment.
Japanese investment in Cambodia reached $75 million last year, up from $35 million in 2010, according to the Japanese Embassy.
Prime Minister Hun Sen said at the launch of Yazaki Corporation site yesterday that Cambodia has political stability and a good relationship with neighbouring countries, as well as open investment laws, making it attractive to Japanese firms.
“There are two things that bring Yazaki and other investors to Cambodia – first is the political stability in the country, second is the relationship between Cambodia and Thailand,” he said.
Data from the Japanese Business Association of Cambodia, who work to boost business between the countries, shows a rise in membership from 50 companies to 100 in February of this year.