A Japan-invested motor manufacturing plant launched operations in Cambodia on Saturday, raising a hope for the development of hi-tech industry in the impoverished Southeast Asian nation.
"Cambodia has reached a new phase of attracting investors for high technology industry after, in the past, it had attracted investments in garment industry," Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen said at the inauguration of the small-size motor manufacturing plant (Minebea Cambodia) in the Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone.
"The plant reflects Japanese investors in Cambodia and it has brought modern technology for the development of Cambodia," he added.
Kinoma Yoshihisa, president and CEO of the Tokyo-based Minebea Co., the investor of Minebea Cambodia, said the plant would assemble DC brush motors and micro-actuators for office-automation equipment, household electrical appliances and digital equipment, using parts supplied by Minebea plants in Thailand, and the finished products will be exported back to Thailand.
"The plant is the first manufacturer of sophisticated and small- sized motors in Cambodia and it creates thousands of jobs and contribute to the development of Cambodia's economy," he said.
Kep Chuk Tema, the governor of Phnom Penh, said the plant began the construction in April, 2011 on the land plot of 100,000 square meters in the Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone.
He said in the next phase, the company will build one more plant on the same plot of land to manufacture medium-size motors.The total investment for the project is 60 million U.S. dollars, he said.
Japan is Cambodia's 11th largest investor with the total investments of 257 million U.S. dollars from 1994 to October 2011, according to the reports of the Council for the Development of Cambodia. Most Japanese investment projects here are in manufacturing industry.
The Minebea was founded in 1951. So far, the firm has set up 32 motor manufacturing plants in 11 countries: Japan, Thailand, China, Singapore, Malaysia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Slovakia, Czech and Cambodia.