" KOICA (Korea International Cooperation Agency) "
The Korea International Cooperation Agency was founded as a government agency on April 1, 1991, to maximize the effectiveness of Korea’s grant aid programs for developing countries by implementing the government’s grant aid and technical cooperation programs. In the past, development cooperation efforts were focused on meeting the Basic Human Needs (BHNs) of developing countries and on fostering their Human Resources Development (HRD).
However, the focus has now shifted to promoting sustainable development, strengthening partnerships with developing partners, and enhancing the local ownership of beneficiaries. Additionally, global concerns such as the environment, poverty reduction, gender mainstreaming, have gained significant importance in the international community.
“ Korea's Experience and KOICA's Program for Human Resources Development ”
Human Resource Development (HRD) has been the most important factor in Korea's escape from the vicious cycle of poverty and underdevelopment that had existed for many decades. With scant natural resources, HRD played a vital role in modern Korea's development. Clearly, Korea has emerged as an exemplary showcase of national development powered by human resources development.
From its own development experience, Korea came to fully recognize the significance of HRD, specifically in regards to Korea's collaboration with other developing countries. With much experience and know-how in HRD, Korea can contribute greatly to the international community by sharing its unique development experience with other nations. Since its establishment in 1991, KOICA has supported a variety of international cooperation programs for HRD, mainly in project-type aid form focusing on education and vocational training with a focus in building a foundation for HRD.
The training and expertise-sharing programs help developing countries build administrative and technical expertise in both the public and the industrial sectors. In order to share experience and knowledge at the grass roots level, KOICA dispatches Korea Overseas Volunteers (KOV’s) to render services in the fields of education, regional development, computer science, healthcare and nursing. Approximately 3,776 KOV’s have been dispatched to thus far. The training program provides opportunities to individuals from developing countries to gain first-hand knowledge of Korea’s development. The purpose of this program is to enable the trainees to apply what they have learned for the development of their home country or local community.
Between 1991 and 2009, KOICA offered 2,256 training courses to a total of 35,716 trainees from some 171 countries. There is a wide range of topics covered including administration, economic development, science and technology, information and communication technology, agriculture/ forestry/fishery, and healthcare. In order to meet the constantly changing needs of its partner countries, KOICA is always striving to renovate and improve their HRD programs.