JICA To Look at Sihanoukville

Officials from the Ministry of Commerce and the Japan Inter­national Cooperation Agency have signed a deal to study development together in Siha­noukville, Phnom Penh and al­ong National Roads 3 and 4, with the ultimate goal of expanding industrial development.

Minister of Commerce Cham Prasidh and JICA Project Team Leader Nobuhiro Koyama signed the pact Thursday. It creates a team to perform a 17-month feasibility study examining industrial growth opportunities

“This study is very important for Cambodia so we can secure the flow of goods from Cambo­dian and foster trade in Cambo­dia,” Cham Prasidh said. “At the end of the study, we will have a clear picture of how the plan will be implemented.”

The study will concentrate on creating a strategy for developing textile and agriculture industries along National Roads 3 and 4, as well as looking at whether it is feasible to turn Sihanoukville into a larger trade zone, said Satoshi Umenaga, deputy director of the first development study division of JICA’s social development study department.

When finished, this analysis will propose a “regional development master plan of Phnom Penh” and a “Sihanoukville growth corridor,” that will encourage industrial development in cooperation with the Siha­nouk­ville Export Processing zone, a statement from JICA said.

The cost of the study has not yet been determined, Umenaga said, adding that JICA will provide technical assistance for the study.

Cham Prasidh said the study will assign Cambodian officials to the steering committee for development in these areas. This will allow officials to become “self-reliant” and teaches them to conduct their own studies in the future, he said.

JICA was chosen to aid in this study because they have data and experience in poverty and development issues, Cham Prasidh added.


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