Siem Reap city, Siem Reap province – The Environment Ministry yesterday said Japan renewed its desire to support pro-environment initiatives in Asean countries, including Cambodia.
Asean Plus Three countries (China, Japan and South Korea) are currently here attending the 15th Asean Ministerial Meeting on Environment.
Japan expressed its desire to support the initiatives during the sideline Asean-Japan Ministerial Dialogue on Environmental Cooperation.
Environment Minister Say Samal yesterday said Asean members are looking to move ongoing pro-environment projects forward and Japan is interested in supporting education, recycling, wastewater treatment, developing sustainable cities and reducing climate change.
“We are going to discuss new cooperation proposals…that are supposed to be raised by our Japanese counterparts,” Mr Samal said.
He noted that that Japan, through its Environment Ministry, had previously supported the Model Cities programme in 40 cities in Asean from 2011 to 2017, among other pro-environment initiatives.
“Japan has been supporting Asean through the East Asia Summit, which is a series of high-level seminars on the environmentally sustainable cities,” Mr Samal said.
He noted that these seminars focus on implementing the United Nations-led 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development and other universal agreements, such as the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the New Urban Agenda.
According to a press release, Asean countries and Japan yesterday reviewed ongoing projects and discussed the future of strategic cooperation in the areas of biodiversity, climate change, education, and science and technology.
It said Asean Environment Ministers agreed to meet again in the Philippines next year during the 16th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Asean Agreement on Trans-boundary Haze Pollution and in Indonesia in 2021 for the 16th Asean Ministerial Meeting on the Environment.
Neth Pheaktra, spokesman for the Environment Ministry, yesterday said Asean Plus Three countries raised the importance of cooperation to reduce climate change.
“Asean Plus Three countries’ meeting focused only on cooperation,” Mr Pheaktra said. “Cambodia can work on environmental projects with China, South Korea and Japan.”