The Siem Reap Provincial Administration and Takamatsu city of Kagawa Prefecture, Japan, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to implement “smart city” initiatives, aligning with both countries’ policies to promote digital technologies.
The MoU signing ceremony took place during an online video conference on February 6, chaired by provincial governor Prak Sophoan and Takamatsu mayor Onishi Hideto.
Sophoan said Siem Reap town joined the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) during the 32nd ASEAN Summit in April 2018, hosted by Singapore. The ASCN is a collaborative platform that aims to unify technologically modern urban development efforts across the region.
He noted that the provincial administration has received technical assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to develop Siem Reap into a smart city, with full support for piloting eight projects in the provincial capital.
“JICA plays a crucial role in supporting cooperation between Siem Reap and Takamatsu. With the signing of the agreement between the two sides, I believe this cooperation will yield further proud results, advancing smart city implementation in both locations, aligned with global trends of the fourth industrial revolution,” he said.
Hideto highlighted the relationship between the two provinces through exchange study visits, disaster prevention systems and meetings across various sectors.
During the teleconference, Kawamura Kenichi, senior vice-president of JICA, said the agreement demonstrated cooperation in promoting and developing various fields using digital technology, as well as human resources training and exchanges related to smart cities.
“This cooperative relationship began in 2020. In May 2022, we launched the ‘Smart City’ project, a multi-stakeholder technical initiative utilising technology to better manage and address occurring problems,” he said.
The Siem Reap administration and JICA collaborate closely to promote implementation and strengthen capacity building.
In July 2023, Takamatsu hosted the G7 Sustainable Urban Development Ministers’ Meeting to discuss building international partnerships based on common principles and developing sustainable cities.