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Cambodian BCBN Delegates visit the Secretariat
24−26 August, Tokyo, Japan

001APO Director for Cambodia Hong (L) presenting a gift to Secretary-General Takenaka (R)

The Bilateral Cooperation Between NPOs (BCBN) Program has been a model of mutual support and cooperation for productivity improvement among APO member countries. The program sponsors visits of high-level officials, policymakers, and opinion leaders from one member country to another to observe firsthand proven productivity policies and projects. Under this scheme, four delegates from Cambodia visited Japan, 24−26 August “to learn more about the Japanese productivity development policy and experience of Japan and the One Village, One Product development (OVOP) of Oita prefecture.” The delegation was led by Secretary of State of the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy (MIME) Chea Sieng Hong, who has been the APO Director for Cambodia since January 2009. Cambodia is the most recent APO member, joining in 2004. The National Productivity Center of Cambodia (NPCC) under the auspices of MIME hosted the workshop meeting of the Heads of NPOs in Siem Reap in October last year.

002Delegates receiving Secretariat briefing (R-L): NPCC Director Yea Bunna; APO Director Hong; Under Secretary of State for Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) Soung Mengkea; MEF Director of Cabinet Men Lux.

The BCBN delegates visited the Secretariat on 24–25 August to meet APO Secretary-General Shigeo Takenaka and receive departmental briefings on major APO programs and activities. Secretary Hong commented, “After four departmental presentations, we now have a more complete understanding of APO activities, especially at the Secretariat office. We learned about the history of the APO and the programs each department is involved in. Previously, my experience with the APO was limited to participating in the Governing Body Meeting in Sri Lanka in April. I am surprised at the broad scope of APO programs and the dedication of the Secretariat staff, including the Secretary-General, to improving productivity and making member countries competitive. I am very proud that Cambodia is an APO member and would like to work with the APO to improve the productivity not only of Cambodia but also of all Asian communities.”

The delegates paid a courtesy call on Japan Productivity Center (JPC) President Tsuneaki Taniguchi and were briefed on JPC activities before calling on Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry on 26 August. They then traveled to Singapore, 27–29 August, to learn about SME-related activities and the country’s productivity movement from SPRING Singapore and the Singapore Productivity Association, respectively.