Japan body offers help to OVOP
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
AN AGENCY from Japan is willing to provide more expert help for the One Village One Product (OVOP) project at the request of the Ministry of Home Affairs, said one of the agency’s officers recently.
Iwai Masaya, senior deputy director at the Japan Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR), said that they will be meeting with the Ministry of Home Affairs at the beginning of next year to see what kind of assistance they would like.
He said that they would be able to send a specialist to further help with the OVOP project if the ministry requests for it.
CLAIR had already previously sent specialists to Brunei to help with the OVOP initiative in 2010 and 2011.
The CLAIR specialist dispatch project was created in 2000 to improve the quality of local administration, technical expertise and human resources in local governments outside Japan, to promote friendly relations.
The programme involves sending expert Japanese government officials to provide their technical skills or knowledge. In regards to the OVOP project, Masaya said that Brunei kampungs have been seeing returns from the programme.
“I think the project has been seeing results in this country, so we are happy to see that,” he said.
The OVOP project began on the national level in 2009 and was aimed to develop and encourage economic projects and local businesses within local villages. It currently has 154 products listed across food, agriculture, tourism/services and handicrafts.
A delegation from CLAIR was in the country recently to learn more about the relationship between villages and the government.
The delegation also had a closer look at two villages and their OVOP products.
The CLAIR delegation visited Kg Kapok, and was briefed by the village head Hj Marali Hj Ahmad on the manufacturing of banana chips conducted by the village bureau of economics and women’s bureau and youth.
The delegation also visited Kg Sungai Matan and was briefed on the local village tourism attractions such the Sungai Matan Carnival, eco-tourism and homestay.
The Brunei Times