Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Jica targets ‘soft components’ as next stage forward




Jica targets ‘soft components’ as next stage forward

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Free buses are another Japanese government contribution.

Jica targets ‘soft components’ as next stage forward

While Japan’s reconstruction efforts in Cambodia don’t appear to be slowing down even after nearly 30 years, they could take a different direction in the coming years.

Japan, which has been pumping in millions of dollars in assisting Cambodia since the end of the civil war period, largely to rebuild its rudimentary infrastructure, could shift its focus slightly.

“Soft components” or technical assistance will become the major thrust of Japan’s Overseas Development Aid – a major shift from its hard infrastructure policy that contributed to the Kingdom’s socioeconomic development since 1992.

“Our support has been changing from infrastructure to soft components. Now we have a new strategy, not only focusing on infrastructure but also on governance and soft components,” Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) representative in Cambodia Shinohara Yuji told The Post.

The activities of Jica – the executing agency of Japan’s development aid in foreign countries – have grown alongside Cambodia’s steady economic growth.

The agency’s support is seen, for instance, in healthcare and road and bridge construction, as well as agriculture and marine aquaculture.

“Our projects have solved many problems in Cambodia. For example, in removing landmines and unexploded ordnance, to the construction of symbolic bridges like the across to Chroy Changwar, the ‘Phnom Penh Miracle’ water supply project, to assisting the Ministry of Justice in designing the Civil Code, as well as supporting high quality agriculture,” Yuji said.

Another notable soft component project is the “community police”. Jica is working with the Ministry of Interior to promote “community police” in rural areas, a concept adopted from the Japanese “Koban” system.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Jica has been instrumental in promoting the marine aquaculture sector in the Kingdom.

“This project started in 2017 in Phnom Penh. It is to train civil officers. Japanese and Cambodian trainers will provide training for the police and train the trainers,” Yuji said.

It has a been “good journey” for almost three decades to assist in shaping Cambodia’s infrastructure demands to support the growing economy, he added.

“We have met around 70 per cent of our objectives and made good progress from water, [sea] port to agriculture. These projects have successfully contributed to Cambodia’s growth.

“These projects were implemented by both Cambodian and Japanese people. Jica considers capacity development as most important concept. We are therefore proud that capacity development is the most important factor to contribute to sustainable and rapid growth of Cambodia after the civil war,” Yuji said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • Passing the test: Is Cambodia’s education system failing its people?

    The Kingdom’s education system needs to grow its people but some flaws might stifle​ this growth Coming from the Khmer Rouge occupation, with the loss of many scholars and academicians and a collapsed government, the education system had to be reconstructed from scratch – one

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia