Volume 5 – March 2021
- The 4th DISG Webinar of the Series: “Upgrading Food Value Chain in Mekong and ASEAN”
- Launch of “J-Bridge” (New business platform to facilitate cross-border open innovation)
- The 2nd Cleaner Energy Future Initiative for ASEAN (CEFIA) Government-Private Forum was held
- ADX Project Introduction in Cambodia (Toyota Tsusho)
We held the 4th DISG webinar of the series entitled “Upgrading Food Value Chain in Mekong and ASEAN” on February 9th, 2021. In this webinar, key figures from ASEAN and Japan shared the importance of upgrading food value chain in Mekong and ASEAN region with advanced technologies such as digital tech and more.
We would like to introduce “J-Bridge” operated by Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), a new business platform to facilitate collaboration and alliances between Japanese companies and overseas startups/businesses including SEA’s.
Another highlight of last month is the 2nd Cleaner Energy Future Initiative for ASEAN (CEFIA) Government-Private forum. This forum was held on February 2nd, 2021, and brought together government officials in the field of energy from ASEAN, Japan, China and the Republic of Korea (ROK) as well as representatives from universities and private companies. Moreover, taking the opportunity of the forum, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and METI signed a memorandum of cooperation (MOC) in CEFIA.
Finally, we would like to introduce a feature story issued last month about an ADX project. A highlight story here is Toyota Tsusho who aims to develop and provide a “MaaS (Mobility-as-a-Service)” application which enables tourists to plan itinerary seamlessly from choosing destination, arranging means of transportation to purchasing tickets in Cambodia.
The 4th DISG Webinar of the Series: “Upgrading Food Value Chain in Mekong and ASEAN”
We welcomed the opening remarks from Dr. Doan Duy Khuon, Vice President, the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and Co-Chair of ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC), in which he emphasized COVID-19 can serve as a trigger to promote digitalization and an opportunity for the business corporations in various regional projects.
Then, Mr. Suriyan Vichitlekarn, Executive Director, Mekong Institute, delivered a keynote speech in which he shared the issues, challenges as well as major development directions and solutions in the field of agriculture and food value chain in Mekong region, and introduced Greater Mekong Sub-region and ASEAN's agenda for actions.
After the keynote speech, a panel discussion was held with five additional panelists; Dr. Pham Quang Minh from the ASEAN Secretariat, Mr. Suda Yasuhiro from Sojitz Corporation, Mr. Munesato Tatsumi from Japan Telecommunications Engineering and Consulting Services (JTEC), Mr. Amnart Butthongkamwong from Siam Kubota Corporation and Mr. Fukada Tsuyoshi from Yamato Green Co.Ltd.
After the introduction of the panelists’ activities, they discussed how each company can contribute on upgrading food value chain in ASEAN and Mekong region by using IT management systems, promoting sustainable smart farming, developing traceability system and collaborating with local companies and organizations. The panelists also shared potential opportunities brought by digitalization and the expectations to further ASEAN-Japan collaboration in these areas.
The next webinar will be held in March, the theme will be related to RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership).
Launch of “J-Bridge” (New business platform to facilitate cross-border open innovation)
On February 18th, 2021, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) launched a new business platform, the Japan Innovation Bridge or “J-Bridge” to facilitate cross-border open innovation among Japanese companies and overseas startups/businesses.
J-Bridge is an open innovation business platform to promote connections, cooperation, and collaboration among Japanese and overseas companies in 6 priority fields, namely carbon neutral, mobility, retail, health care, agriculture & fisheries and smart cities. JETRO offices in target areas/countries(*) will support business matching formation with continuous follow-up till tangible business collaboration.
* ASEAN (especially in Indonesia, Singapore and Vietnam), India, Israel, Australia, United States and Europe (US and Europe to be initially focusing on carbon neutral sector only)
In 2019, in collaboration with METI, JETRO launched Asia DX Promotion Programs, which aims to jointly create new business solutions to overcome social challenges through applying digital technologies, in collaboration with ASEAN companies. J-Bridge will be strengthening this Asia DX initiative through preparing various tools to promote business collaboration.
Specifically, under J-Bridge platform, JETRO Offices will provide supports such as; 1) brochure development in introducing business outlines and particular collaboration needs to “J-Bridge Members”, JETRO’s membership program among Japanese corporates, 2) networking opportunities with Japanese corporates, 3) one-by-one business meeting with J-Bridge members, and 4) individualized support from JETRO in line with the business development stage. JETRO may also welcome any business promotion agencies/business associations to support J-Bridge activities as “J-Bridge Partners”.
Please click here for more detail on J-Bridge.
You may send inquiries to JETRO DX Promotion Team (PIC: Gamada (Mr.)),
The 2nd Cleaner Energy Future Initiative for ASEAN (CEFIA) Government-Private Forum was held
The 2nd CEFIA Government-Private Forum was held on February 2, 2021, hosted by the government of the Kingdom of Thailand. The forum brought together government officials in the field of energy from 10 ASEAN economies, and Japan, China and the ROK as well as representatives from universities and private companies.
At the beginning of the forum, Parliamentary Vice-Minister Munekiyo delivered a speech as a representative of the government of Japan. He stated that [i] Japan will aim to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, as was declared by Prime Minister Suga in October 2020, in parallel with initiating a positive cycle of economy and environment by placing technological innovations at the core; [ii] CEFIA will become a contributor to efforts for encouraging member countries to shift to realistically feasible, sustainable energy systems; and [iii] through CEFIA, international financial institutions, governments, companies, local banks and other organizations are expected to work together and discuss ideal approaches to projects.
Moreover, taking the opportunity of the forum, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and METI signed a memorandum of cooperation (MOC) in CEFIA. Signees were Mr. Tanaka Shigehiro, Vice-Minister for International Affairs, METI, and Mr. Bambang Susantono, Vice-President, ADB.
In addition to the result of the forum, CEFIA Digital Platform was launched. It will provide various information of CEFIA activities to facilitate knowledge sharing and various collaborations.
Please click here for more detail.
ADX Project Introduction in Cambodia (Toyota Tsusho)
Toyota Tsusho is aiming to develop and provide a “MaaS (Mobility-as-a-Service)” application which enables tourists to plan itinerary seamlessly from choosing destination, arranging means of transportation to purchasing tickets in Cambodia.
Mr. Kondo Takanori, General Manager, Toyota Tsusho Asia Pacific, explained the reason why they choose Cambodia that long business history and relationship in automotive industry in the country, their plan to develop new mobility service business for tourism sector and interest from Siem Reap as a model city for ASEAN Smart City Network.
When asked about Toyota Tsusho’s plan in Cambodia, Mr. Kondo said that the company will provide various benefits through partnering and collaboration with a ride-sharing company, local drive association and Angkor Enterprise; 1) for tourists, the application lets tourists free from stressful processes, 2) for service providers, it could lead to the development of new businesses for local tourism service providers, and 3) for local government, the information collected through the application would help them making industrial policies.
Mr. Kondo also added his company’s expansion plan after current demonstration project in Siem Reap. Toyota Tsusho will concentrate on establishing “MaaS” business model for Cambodia tourism first. Once that has been successfully implemented, they would consider expanding to other ASEAN countries.
Apart from Toyota Tsusho’s project, DISG have published 4 other introduction of ADX series including Kobelco Construction Machinery in Malaysia (Environment) ,Medring in Vietnam (Healthcare), Fuso Machine Works in Indonesia (Manufacturing), and Sagri in Thailand (Agriculture). Please follow the link for more information on each project.
We thank everyone for your interest and support. Please look forward to the future webinar series and information dissemination through newsletters and our website, social media, etc. As announced in this newsletter, the next webinar will be held on March 2021. The theme will be related to “RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership)”.
Mr. KOBAYASHI Hirokazu
Chair of AMEICC DISG Task Force
Executive Director, JETRO Singapore