September 29, 2022
The 8th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD8) was held in the Tunisian capital of Tunis, on August 27 and 28. This year's TICAD was attended online by Prime Minister Kishida Fumio and co-chaired by Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa, participating in person as Special Envoy of the Prime Minister, H.E. Mr. Kais Saied, President of the Republic of Tunisia (host country), and H.E. Mr. Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal / Chairperson of the African Union (AU), with representatives from 48 African countries participating. As a result of these leaders' attendance, the Tunis Declaration was adopted. In conjunction with this, “Japan’s Contributions for Africa,” consisting of 70 items, was released by the Japanese government.
Prime Minister Kishida, in his opening speech, emphasized the importance of “investment in people,” with “Japan as a partner growing together with Africa,” and expressed his commitment to “invest a sum of US$ 30 billion in public and private financial contributions over the next three years” and to “cultivate 300,000 professionals.”
Based on the results of the two-day discussions, the meeting adopted the Tunis Declaration, which consists of three pillars: 1) Economy: Realizing a structural transformation for sustainable economic growth and social development; 2) Society: Realizing a resilient and sustainable society; and 3) Peace and stability: Realizing sustainable peace and stability. The Declaration confirms the importance of “investment in people,” as well as the importance of multilateralism, respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, and the pursuit of peaceful resolution of disputes.
During the TICAD session, President of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Tanaka Akihiko participated in and spoke at three TICAD-related events held in Tunis. First, on August 27, he gave a speech at a business forum organized by the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO). Mentioning that the private sector, especially that which involves youth and innovation, is key to overcoming the compound crises facing Africa, he introduced three examples of JICA’s efforts: 1) The ABE Initiative (African Business Education Initiative for youth); 2) Project NINJA (Next Innovation with Japan); and 3) FinTech support through Private Sector Investment Finance. He stressed the importance of solidarity with African countries and peoples, the private sector, and the international community.
On August 28, President Tanaka spoke at the launch event of the fifth phase of the Enhanced Private Sector Assistance for Africa initiative (EPSA 5), which was held as part of the Business Forum, together with Japan’s Vice-Minister of Finance for International Affairs, Kanda Masato, and President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Akinwumi Adesina, to promote the implementation of EPSA 5. To this end, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on taskforce collaboration was concluded with AfDB. As part of the new EPSA, the government of Japan also announced an increase in the loan amount to $4 billion (from the $3.5 billion of EPSA 4), through the strengthening of connectivity and the addition of agriculture and nutrition as priority areas. In response to this, President Tanaka spoke about the fact that JICA and AfDB have been working together for private sector development in Africa through EPSA since 2005 and have achieved US$7.3 billion in financial cooperation. He also recognized the importance of strengthening resilience and ensuring human security in Africa under compound crises, as well as demonstrating solidarity in the international community. He announced that as an implementing agency of the Japanese government, JICA will responsibly contribute to the achievement of the EPSA 5 goals.
On August 28, JICA, JETRO, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) signed a Statement of Intent (SOI) to further strengthen cooperation among the four organizations and boost support for business partnerships and investment in Africa.
President Tanaka delivered a speech along with Mr. Sasaki Nobuhiko, CEO & Chairman of JETRO, Mr. Achim Steiner, Administrator of UNDP, and Mr. Yasunaga Yuko, Managing Director of UNIDO. President Tanaka noted the significance of the solidarity among the four organizations by leveraging their respective strengths for private sector development in Africa, including the expansion of Japanese companies’ business in Africa.
During their stay in Tunisia from August 25 to 29, President Tanaka and Senior Vice President Nakamura Toshiyuki met with the leaders of African countries attending TICAD8 and key figures from international organizations. Their goal was to confirm priority issues for cooperation in each country and to exchange opinions on expectations for future cooperation.
(Left)H.E. Mr. Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal, (Center)H. E. Mrs. Najla Bouden, Head of the Government of the Republic of Tunisia, (Right)H.E. Mr. Patrick Jérôme Achi, Prime Minister of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire
(Left)H.E. General Évariste Ndayishimiye, President of the Republic of Burundi, (Right)Hon. Mr. Majaliwa Kassim Majaliwa, Prime Minister of the United Republic of Tanzania
(Left)Ms Nardos Bekele-Thomas, Chief Executive Officer of AUDA-NEPAD, (Right)Mr. Akinwumi Adesina, President of the AfDB
JICA hosted 24 TICAD8 side events online over a five-day period from August 22 to 26, with approximately 5,000 viewers. Under the theme of “Towards a resilient, inclusive, and prosperous African continent,” at these side events, diverse actors from African governments, international organizations, and others discussed the challenges facing Africa and the direction of future efforts in various fields, including health, climate change, agriculture, regional integration, industrial development, peace, governance, and digital transformation.
Through people-focused development cooperation based on African ownership, JICA will work to encourage Africa’s progress toward becoming a resilient, inclusive, and prosperous continent, and to strengthen ties and trust between Africa and Japan.