The Japan Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR), Singapore

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1 The Japan Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR), Singapore 一 般 財 団 法 人 自 治 体 国 際 化 協 会 シンガポール 事 務 所

2 About CLAIR The Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR) was established in July 1988 in response to rising concern for local level internationalization in Japan. CLAIR was created as a joint organization of local governments to promote and provide support for local internationalization. CLAIR s headquarters are located in Tokyo with seven representative offices in Singapore, New York, London, Paris, Seoul, Sydney and Beijing. CLAIR Singapore CLAIR Singapore was set up in October 1990 and conducts activities in the 10 ASEAN countries (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam) and India. Our Main Activities Promote local level exchange between Japan and ASEAN countries as well as India Support Japanese local governments activities in ASEAN countries and India Conduct research on local administration and finance systems as well as the various policies in ASEAN countries and India Introduce Japan s local administration and finance systems as well as its various policies to ASEAN countries and India India Myanmar Laos Vietnam Thailand Cambodia Malaysia Singapore Brunei Philippines Office Profile Indonesia Our office consists of 19 staff dispatched from Japan and 5 local staff. No. Dispatched from Director 1 Ministry of Internal Affairs & Communications Senior Deputy Director 1 Fukuoka Assistant Counselor 2 Hyogo, Kyoto 1 Deputy Director 12 Division Director 3 Yamagata, Nagano, Kumamoto Local Staff 5 Tokyo, Nagasaki, Miyazaki, Kagoshima, Okinawa, Sapporo City, Oyama City, Hamamatsu City, Yamaguchi City, Kitakyushu City, Nagasaki City, Ota City(Tokyo)

3 Seminars and Exchange Sessions on Local Administration With an aim to enhance cooperation and exchange in the area of local administration, CLAIR Singapore actively proposes organizing seminars and exchange sessions with local government officials and related parties in Southeast Asian countries and India. These initiatives provide a platform for academics and practitioners of local governance from both sides to discuss best practices and exchange new insights on local administration. Local Administration Seminars Organized by CLAIR Singapore CLAIR Singapore plans and implements local administration seminars with the cooperation of our counterparts in order to promote knowledge exchange on issues of particular concern, as well as support the further development of local administrative systems in Japan and the respective host countries. Seminars Planned for FY2015 Country (City) Schedule Overview of Seminar Thailand (Bangkok) 18 May 2015 A seminar introducing the reforms in the local administration of Japan. Topics such as municipality mergers and the local financial system will be of reference to the target audience of Thai local government officials who are in the midst of drafting constitutional amendments to their local administrative system. Local Administration Seminar Series Organized by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications CLAIR Singapore actively assists in the local administration seminar series held annually by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Japan in cooperation with a host country in Southeast Asia. CLAIR Singapore coordinates the details of the seminar with the co organizer in the host country and ensures the smooth operation of the actual event. Seminars Planned for FY2015 Country (City) Schedule Tentative Themes Philippines (Manila) May 2015 Tourism Promotion in the Local Regions Group photo taken during the 2014 Seminar in Manila Indonesia (Jakarta) September 2015 Innovations in Local Governance Japan Local Administration Seminar CLAIR Singapore established a new initiative entitled Japan Local Administration Seminar, which functions as a platform for academics as well as practitioners of local governance in the ASEAN region to understand Japan s local administration system and the leading urban policies implemented by Japanese local governments. The inaugural seminar was held at Universiti Utara Malaysia in December Staff of CLAIR Singapore participated as speakers, presenting case studies of Japanese local governance and interacting with the students during group discussions on a wide array of topics. Inaugural Seminar in FY2014 Fiscal Year Country Counterpart Institution 2014 Malaysia Universiti Utara Malaysia CLAIR Singapore representatives delivering presentations and exchanging opinions with students of Universiti Utara Malaysia 2

4 Japan Vietnam Regional Exchange Promotion Program To enable Japanese local governments and local international exchange associations to achieve the following: Foster closer understanding of the current situation and challenges pertaining to Japan Vietnam relations Build capacity in leaders who will assume the responsibilities of internationalization of the local areas Create opportunities for the promotion of future Japan Vietnam regional exchange Targeted Participants Japanese local government officials Staff of recognized local international exchange associations Staff of NPOs referred by local governments Exchange Programs held in previous years FY City 2014 Kuala Lumpur Johor Bahru, Malaysia 2013 Bangkok Phitsanulok, Thailand 2012 Singapore, Singapore / Jakarta, Indonesia 2011 Mumbai Pune Chennai, India 2010 Delhi Mumbai Bangalore, India 2009 Phnom Penh, Cambodia / Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam Tentative Program for FY 2015 City Tentative Schedule Places of visit Ha Noi Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam A total of 11 days in November 2015 (Includes a 3 day course in Japan, followed by an 8 day overseas mission in Vietnam ) Group photo taken during a visit to Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government, Malaysia Central and local governments, Japanese governmental organizations, trade organizations, universities, cultural institutions and firms Specialist Dispatch Project FY Country Specialists Area of Expertise To improve the quality of local administration, technical expertise and human resources in foreign local governments. To increase friendly ties between Japanese and foreign local governments. Content Since 2000, CLAIR Singapore has been dispatching Japanese government officials (including retirees), with knowledge or technical skills related to international cooperation as specialists to foreign local governments etc. in response to their requests. The specialists areas of expertise include fire and disaster prevention, water supply and sewerage, social welfare, health and sanitation, local administration etc Indonesia 1 Disaster Prevention Malaysia 1 Waste Management Thailand 1 Tourism Vietnam 2 Fire and Disaster Prevention Indonesia 1 Sewerage Management Malaysia 1 Health and Sanitation Brunei 1 Fire and Disaster Prevention Vietnam 2 Fire and Disaster Prevention Indonesia 1 Environmental Conservation Thailand 1 Tourism Thailand 1 Public Health Thailand 5 Fire and Disaster Prevention The specialist conducting a lecture to the local participants Local site inspection for flood prevention 3

5 Local Government Exchange & Cooperation Seminar The purpose of the program is to increase participant's knowledge of local administration systems in other countries and build networks of contacts. Content Overseas local government officials etc. are invited to Japan to discuss and exchange information on the current situation and various issues of local administration facing local governments in both Japan and their home countries. In addition, the seminar encourages regional exchange as participants visit local governments during their stay in Japan, go on site visits and have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of Japanese culture. Program held in previous years Country No of Participants Total Thailand Malaysia Philippines Vietnam Indonesia Laos Cambodia Myanmar Singapore India Brunei Total Courtesy visit to Kagoshima Prefecture Visit to a factory in Kagoshima Visit to Odaiba in Tokyo Japan Singapore Study Program Singapore s advanced policies have been gaining increasing attention in Japan over the years, and more and more Japanese local governments are indicating their interest to find out more about the nation s various plans and strategies. Through visits and exchange sessions with related organizations in Singapore, this program aims to allow Japanese local government participants to not only learn about Singapore s advanced policies, but also gain a deeper understanding of the local environment, cultures and living circumstances etc. Tentative Programs Planned for FY2015 Theme Tentative Program and Places of Visit Participants visited Singapore Airlines to study about the company s strategies in the FY2014 Study Program 1. Urban Infrastructure and National Strategies Lectures from Singapore s academic institutions, visits to Singapore governmental organizations etc. 2. Tourism Promotion and Overseas Market Development Policies and Strategies Visits to Japanese governmental organizations, representative offices of Japanese local governments, local supermarkets, Japanese companies etc. Participants toured local supermarkets to learn about distribution processes and product demand in FY2014 4

6 Support For Overseas Activities of Japanese Local Governments To support Japanese local government officials and local government related personnel in their overseas events, research activities and field trips etc. in the 10 ASEAN countries and India, CLAIR Singapore introduces the appropriate organizations and individuals, arranges appointments with government agencies, accompanies them on these site visits, conducts briefings on administration systems etc. and provides related materials. In Fiscal Year 2014, CLAIR Singapore assisted in 137 cases. Some Activities Supported in Fiscal Year 2014 Japanese Local Government Okayama Prefecture Fukuoka City Kagoshima Prefecture Kumamoto Prefecture Tokyo Metropolitan Government Hokkaido Content of Support Operational support for a promotional event attended by the Governor of Okayama Prefecture (in Singapore) Coordination for urban policy related visits for the Mayor of Fukuoka City (in Singapore) Operational support for a promotional event of Kagoshima specialty products attended by the Director General of Agriculture Department of Kagoshima Prefecture (in Singapore) Operational support for a promotional event attended by the Governor of Kumamoto Prefecture (in Indonesia) Accompanied delegation from Tokyo Metropolitan Government during the Asian Crisis Management Conference (in Malaysia) Coordination support for international exchange events (in Malaysia Myanmar) Attending to Japanese local government officials on their field trips Tourism Promotion Following Southeast Asia s rapid economic growth and development over the recent years, a growing number of Japanese local governments have been increasingly shifting their attention towards the markets in this region, as they set their sights to attract more Southeast Asian tourists to Japan. Japan Travel Seminar and Business Meeting In order to further introduce and promote attractive travel destinations of Japan, as well as foster a stronger network and relationship between travel industry players in Japan and the ASEAN region and India, CLAIR Singapore also holds travel seminars and B2B business meeting sessions in these markets. Tourism Promotion at International Travel Fairs To support Japanese local governments attempts to boost local economies through tourism, CLAIR Singapore ties up with Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) to participate in international travel fairs in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, India, and Indonesia. CLAIR Singapore compiles reports on the events and disseminates the findings to Japanese local governments. CLAIR Singapore staff at travel fair Japan Local Specialty Fair In order to support Japanese local food manufacturers exploring new overseas markets in Southeast Asia, CLAIR organizes the Japan Local Specialty Fair which aims to provide a test marketing platform for local signature products sourced through local governments across Japan. The Fair was held in Bangkok and Singapore in 2013 and 2014 respectively, and garnered a lot of participation from suppliers from many local regions. Promoters introducing the products to Thai consumers 5

7 Support for Sister City Affiliation and Exchange The first sister city agreement between Japan and this region was signed by Yokohama and Mumbai in At present, 39 affiliations have been concluded. CLAIR facilitates sister city affiliation and exchange in response to requests. We provide support for international exchange corresponding to the needs of the region and also provide consultation on sister city affiliation. Please contact CLAIR Singapore if you wish to establish an affiliation with a Japanese local government. The Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program To increase cross cultural understanding as well as contribute to internationalization efforts within Japan. Content The JET Program enables local authorities (prefectures, designated cities and other municipalities) to employ foreign youths for the purpose of improving foreign language education as well as promoting international exchange at the local level. By teaching foreign languages at schools nationwide and assisting with international exchange activities organized by local authorities, JET participants engage in international exchange at a variety of levels with local residents. After returning home, many JET alumni continue to contribute towards Japan related activities through the JET Alumni Association Singapore. ALT: Assistant Language Teachers who provide language instruction in elementary, junior and senior high schools CIR: Coordinators for International Relations who work for Japanese local governments to promote international exchange activities SEA: Sports Exchange Advisors who promote international exchange through sports JET Participants FY2015 ALT CIR Total Indonesia Philippines Singapore Malaysia Vietnam Total CIR conducting a session to promote cross-cultural understanding Research and Publications CLAIR Singapore Newsletter CLAIR Singapore also publishes our own English language newsletter that features the various programs and activities our organization implements. The newsletter is available in the electronic format and is distributed to our counterparts in the ASEAN region as well as India. For more information on our newsletter, please visit: Research on Local Autonomy Systems in ASEAN countries and India CLAIR Singapore conducts research on the various policies, local administration and finance systems in ASEAN countries and India, and then compiles them into reports or publications. We have issued several publications in Japanese such as Vietnam s Local Administration System (2007 ed), India s Local Government System (2007) and Indonesia s Local Government System (2008). These publications can be found on CLAIR s website: (in Japanese only) 6

8 CLAIR Singapore The Japan Council of Local Authorities for International Relations, Singapore 6 Battery Road, #26 01/02 Singapore TEL FAX E mail URL Newsletters can be accessed here:

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