Education will continue to be a key area for UNOPS and KOICA's extended collaboration. Building on past successes, such as
the construction of new classroom buildings and sanitary facilities of schools in Sri Lanka and
the support to sustainable education and health services in Palestine, the newly signed projects include the rehabilitation of an industrial training centre and two schools in Kenya, as well as a vocational training centre in Uganda.
UNOPS will also continue to roll out public procurement training, delivered to 11 KOICA offices in 2015, to the rest of the agency's country offices and headquarters. KOICA is also reviewing the possibility of receiving project management training from UNOPS globally.
"We have built a solid ground for new projects with the quality of the work we have done together in the past. UNOPS capacity on the ground and experience dealing with contractors and operational matters can free up more capacity at KOICA's country offices," said Nikolaj Gilbert, UNOPS Director of Partnerships, after attending KOICA's '2015 HQ-Overseas offices innovation workshop' in Seoul early February.
UNOPS and KOICA have worked together for over ten years, mainly within education, procurement support and infrastructure. With roughly half of KOICA's projects being infrastructure related, UNOPS has proven a particularly useful partner with its mandate and experience in the sector.
"KOICA hopes to expand its partnership with UNOPS into other areas and also further collaborate to share knowledge in project management, as well as organizational management," commented Yun Gil Jeong, Managing Director of KOICA's Strategic Planning Department at the bilateral meeting.
KOICA was established as a governmental agency of the Republic of Korea under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1991. It implements Korea's grant aid and technical cooperation programs for inclusive and sustainable development of partner countries. Main areas of operations include education, health, rural development, public administration, and technology environment and energy. KOICA manages its ODA programs through its country offices in 44 partner countries.