Official Development Assistance (ODA)

2. Sharing Universal Values and Realizing a Peaceful and Secure Society

A society where the rights of individuals are guaranteed, where people can engage in socio-economic activities with a sense of safety, and where these activities are managed equitably and stably, forms the foundation that is necessary to achieve quality growth in developing countries. From the standpoint of strengthening this foundation, the sharing of universal values such as freedom, democracy, respect for basic human rights, and the rule of law, as well as the ensuring of peace, stability, and security, are of great importance.

2-1 Assistance for Realizing an Equitable and Inclusive Society
(1) Assistance for the Development of Legal and Judicial Systems, and Socio-economic Systems

The development of socio-economic infrastructure, coupled with the establishment of the rule of law, the realization of good governance, the promotion and consolidation of democratization, and respect for basic human rights including women's rights, are key to laying the foundations for developing a nation through self-help efforts. In this regard, cooperation for rule of law promotion is required to develop laws and to train legal and judicial experts, including experts in the correction and rehabilitation of offenders, as well as to assist in the development of economic systems that involve the establishment of tax systems, appropriate collection, management and execution of taxes, strengthening of audit functions of the public sector, and human resources development for improving financial systems.

<Japan's Efforts>

As part of the assistance for legal and economic systems, Japan provides assistance that addresses legal and judicial system reform, local administration, capacity-building of civil servants, enhancement of internal audits, and human resources development serving to establish civil codes, competition law, tax, internal audit, and public investment systems in countries such as Cambodia, Viet Nam, Myanmar, Laos, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Timor-Leste, Nepal, Iran, and Cote d'Ivoire. Assistance for this system is a typical example of “person-to-person cooperation” between Japan and the recipient countries, and Japan implements such assistance as part of Japan's visible development cooperation.

In addition, the improvement of the legal and economic systems in developing countries through such measures leads to improvements in the business environment that allow Japanese companies to do their business in these countries; such initiatives are also important in this respect. Japan's assistance for the improvement of legal and economic systems draws on Japan's “soft power,” and promotes and underpins growth in the world, including Asia.

Every year, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) holds an international training course (twice a year) and an international senior seminar (once a year) for criminal justice practitioners from developing countries, mainly from the Asia-Pacific region, in collaboration with the United Nations Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (UNAFEI). Each course and seminar has focused on key identified issues among the UN and the international community, and has been adapted to the changing agenda in the global society. The main topic of the spring international training course is crime prevention and anticrime measures, and that for the autumn session is the treatment of offenders. The international seminar for senior officials covers a wide range of criminal justice issues.

MOJ also conducts international training courses on the Rule of Law Promotion, as well as studies on the legal systems in other countries and seminars in developing countries by dispatching experts. These activities are aimed at supporting the drafting of basic laws and regulations as well as economic laws and regulations in developing countries, establishing the basis for the proper operation and execution of legal systems, and strengthening the training of legal professionals. Specifically, MOJ invited legal practitioners and lawmaking professionals, such as justice ministry officials, judges, and prosecutors, from Asian countries including Viet Nam, Myanmar, Laos, and Indonesia, and held trainings on themes such as the drafting of legislation and the development of legal human resources tailored to the needs of each country. Additionally, MOJ dispatched experts from Japan to recipient countries to hold seminars and other activities.

In order to earnestly and proactively promote assistance that is aligned with the needs of developing countries, MOJ works to continuously implement effective assistance by conducting broad and basic studies regarding the legal systems of the countries and their interpretations and operations.