"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Opening Speech by Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio for the Celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the OECD Southeast Asia Regional Programme

[Date] May 2, 2024
[Source] Cabinet Public Affairs Office, Cabinet Secretariat
[Notes] Provisional translation
[Full text]

Secretary-General Mr. Cormann, distinguished guests,

SEARP was launched at the 2014 MCM where I participated as Foreign Minister, and has made remarkable progress over the past decade. In this milestone year, I sincerely welcome the adoption of the accession roadmap for Indonesia and the application for membership by Thailand.

As we strive to ensure OECD standards maintain and improve their effectiveness and universality in today's global economy, it is important more than ever for the OECD to strengthen relations with Southeast Asia, the world's engine for growth. Furthermore, in order to address global challenges such as climate change, the involvement of Southeast Asia is essential, as the region has become a key actor not only economically but also in the international community.

For Southeast Asia, strengthening cooperation with the OECD will help create an environment that attracts private investment, which will support the region's robust development and growth.

In pursuit of our major goal of co-creating a sustainable future, it is imperative that both the OECD and Southeast Asia work hand in hand to advance SEARP to a new phase.

The OECD's ability to provide high-level policy recommendations becomes truly meaningful only when it aligns with the domestic reform needs of individual countries and contributes to their realization. Japan is launching the "Japan OECD-ASEAN Partnership Program (JOAPP)" to harness the OECD's strengths in reliable data and analysis for sustainable growth in Southeast Asia. Over the next three years, we plan to mobilize around 8 million euros (about 1.4 billion yen) to implement projects focused on private investment, connectivity, sustainability, and digital areas. These projects will involve dispatching OECD experts, conducting research and analyses as well as training.

As part of this initiative, we are also establishing a cooperation framework between JICA and the OECD to further promote OECD standards through development cooperation.

Through these efforts, we will further enhance the operational strength of SEARP over the next decade and collaborate with you in co-creating a sustainable future.