On Tuesday 24 July, the Mekong Institute (MI) hosted lecturers and researchers from Nagoya University, Japan at its residential training facility in Khon Kaen. The seven person contingent, which included members of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Thailand Development and Research Institute (TDRI) and the National Economic and Social Development Bank (NESDB), came to learn more about the institutes activities, research projects, and possible areas of regional collaboration and cooperation.
Of particular interest to the Japanese visitors was a presentation by Ms. Phornphan Srikhattanaprom, Project Coordinator for Labor Migration, outlining the findings of MIs recent research project on Vocational Skill Requirements of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) in Lao PDR and Cambodia.
The presentation which focused on emerging issues rooted in the over-and-under-supply of various labor markets and industries in the aforementioned countries provided the basis for a lively Q&A session and discussion between MI staff, including MI Director Suchat Katima, and the university and JICA researchers.
Participants traded opinions on the research findings with a level of consensus reached that the over-lap of themes between MI and Nagoya/JICAs research should be grounds for future collaborative efforts.
The experts from Japan were particularly impressed by MIs up-to-date research and on-site data collection in Cambodia and Laos.
The meeting continues the longstanding connections with the Japanese experts who have long supported MIs programs and efforts in promoting regional cooperation.