Official Development Assistance (ODA)

Section 2 Support for the Development of Legislation

To promote strengthening the rule of law in the international community, it is important - in developing countries where legislation has not been fully developed - to provide support for the self-help efforts of developing countries based on good governance, through supporting initiatives towards the drafting of legislation and development of legal systems, as well as the understanding and establishment of such systems. Also, it is important to build the foundations that are essential to sustainable growth.

To attain the goals of economic growth, securing human rights, and eradicating poverty in developing countries, and to ensure that the people are able to live in a secure and affluent environment, it is vital to ensure that domination by force is not rampant, and that reasonable rules that reflect the will of the citizens are enforced, managed, and implemented fairly and appropriately. Japan is engaged in efforts to support the development and improvement of legal and judicial systems corresponding to the needs and challenges of the respective developing countries, by harnessing its experience of incorporating and harmonizing Western legal and judicial systems with Japanese culture, customs, and existing systems since the Meiji Restoration.

Based on the “Basic Policies on Legal Technical Assistance” revised in May 2013, Japan has expanded its efforts to provide sustained support for the development of legal systems in eight priority countries in Asia (Indonesia, Viet Nam, Myanmar, Mongolia, Cambodia, Laos, Uzbekistan, and Bangladesh). For example, in Cambodia, where it has been impossible to develop legal systems on its own due to a shortage of legal human resources after the end of the civil war, Japan has provided support in the area of legal human resource development and its dissemination since 1999, and contributed to the enactment of about 20 laws related to civilian affairs, with the aim of drafting and appropriately enforcing laws including the civil law and civil procedure law of the country. As it takes a certain amount of time to establish democracy through the rule of law, Japan is engaged in providing continued and sustained support to ensure that the enacted laws are properly enforced and established, and that the rights of the citizens are secured.

For the African region, Japan has also dispatched judicial advisors to Cote d'Ivoire, set up call centers to provide the citizens with legal information, and conducted criminal justice training in both Cote d'Ivoire and Japan for criminal justice officials of eight countries in the West Africa region including Cote d'Ivoire.

The amount provided by Japan to support in the area of governance, including support for the development of legal systems, has reached approximately $2.7 billion over the 10-year period from 2005 to 2014. Japan will continue its support by providing support for the development and implementation of basic laws, as well as capacity building for law enforcement agencies and people working in the legal profession. In addition to these, Japan will also take active steps to develop the investment environment by boosting support for the development and implementation of intellectual property law systems. To secure stability and prosperity of the international community, Japan will contribute not only to the establishment of legal systems that help to build stable societies and realize free socio-economic activities in the partner countries, but also to the development of a business environment for Japanese and other foreign corporations to expand their businesses in the partner countries.