President Uhuru Kenyatta is among at least a dozen African leaders set to attend the 7th edition of the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD 7) that kicks off on August 28th.
At the three-day international conference focusing on development in Africa which will run until August 30th, Kenya will be seeking to strengthen its bilateral relations as well as consolidate cooperation with Japan in various sectors of the economy, a statement by State House Spokesperson Kanze Dena-Mararo.
Hinged on the theme of “Advancing Africa’s Development through People, Technology and Innovation”, TICAD 7 provides an opportunity for Kenya to engage directly with Japanese investors.
The Kenyan delegation to TICAD 7, which left for Yokohama, Japan on Monday evening, is also focused on optimising the resources available in Japan for the delivery of the Big 4 Agenda in all areas including in Agriculture, Affordable Housing, Universal Health Coverage and Manufacturing, she added. .
TICAD 7 builds on TICAD 6, the first ever Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) on African soil that Kenya hosted in Nairobi three years ago in September 2016.
Apart from showcasing Kenya’s growth and exposing Japan to available areas of cooperation in trade and investment, TICAD 6 also facilitated a high-level policy dialogue between African leaders and Africa’s development partners on issues regarding growth, sustainable development, security, peace and stability. TICAD 7 will review the progress made on these issues and chart the way forward.
Launched by Japan in 1993 to promote Africa’s development, TICAD has over the years grown into a major global and multilateral forum for mobilising and sustaining international support for Africa’s development under the principles of Africa ownership and international partnership.
Other African leaders attending the conference are Rwanda’s Paul Kagame, Yoweri Museveni (Uganda), Abdul Fatten Al-Sisi (Egypt), Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo (Somalia), Emmerson Mnangagwa (Zimbabwe) and Faure Gnassingbe (Togo).
Others are Mahamadou Issoufou (Niger), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo (Ghana), Muhammadu Buhari (Nigeria), Cyril Ramaphosa (South Africa), Ibrahim Boubakar Keita (Mali), Edgar Lungu (Zambia) and Macky Sall (Senegal).
According to Japan, Africa is drawing expectations and attention from the international community as the “biggest frontier of the 21st century.”
“Africa, which embraces a population of more than 1.2 billion in 54 diverse countries, has huge market potential and abundant natural resources,” it added.
In recent years, since relatively stable political conditions have attracted foreign direct investment and expanded domestic consumption, the African economy has experienced significant change and dynamic growth.