Yokohama, August 29: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has pledged on Wednesday to boost investment in Africa from Tokyo’s private sectors to over USD 20 billion for the coming three straight years, in an effort to facilitate the nation’s companies development into Africa.
Addressing a gathering, the Tokyo International Conference on African Development, in Yokohama, Abe told African pioneers: “We will do whatever it takes to assist the advancement of Japanese companies into Africa.”
During delivering the inaugural ceremony’s speech of the three-day event, Abe said Tokyo has long-supported human resource development into Africa, adding, “We are in an era in which the challenges Africa faces will be resolved through science, technology, and innovation.”
Before concluding the speech, he proposed a set of programme under human resource development for Africa that included a training session for 3,000 individuals in Japan for six consecutive years, that can help in promoting the business cooperation between the continent and Japan, according to Japan Today news reports.
As per Japan’s foreign ministry, the Japanese private sector has invested some $20.6 billion into Africa between 2016-2018.
Abe’s commitment means the Japanese government would promote greater investments from its private sector into Africa with the aim of crossing above the previous investment totals.
Japan seeks its domestic firms to boost the growth of Africa, whose population is projected to be around 2.5 billion in 2050. Abe has also vowed to encourage global health coverage.
Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has chaired the conference with the Japanese prime minister, who has said, “On behalf of Africa, I’ll be calling upon the world institutions and multinational companies to invest in our continent.”
The African Union Commission chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat said, “We have had a real deficit in issues of innovation and technology, and we hope that TICAD 7 will come up with innovative solutions in order to have large-scale training of our youth in the areas.”
This was the seventh round of the international conference, co-hosted by the government of Japan, the World Bank, the United Nations (UN), the African Union Commission, and the UN Development Program.
On the margins of these plenary sessions, the Japanese prime minister held a series of bilateral meetings with all participants of the event, including U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.