ADDIS ABABA – African ambassadors based in France discussed cooperation with Japan ahead of the 8th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) summit in Tunis.
The discussion was held in Paris under the theme ‘As an introduction to the next TICAD 8 in Tunis: Assessment and prospects of Japanese cooperation in Africa’ this week.
Ambassador of Ethiopia to France Henok Teferra told the meeting about the inspiration that Japan provides for many African countries with the high level of socio-economic development it has attained.
Like Japan, the ambassador said Ethiopia is investing in human resource development by continuously enhancing access to quality education and infrastructure development. It is also creating conducive conditions for the private sector to flourish and create wealth that will uplift its people from poverty, he added.
Between 2016 and 2019, about 20 billion USD was invested by Japan in Africa with the presence of close to 800 companies.
Going forward, Africa looks to more investments from Japan focusing not just on sales of manufactured goods but the actual setting-up of assembly plants in the continent, according to Ambassador Henok.
Ethiopia, with an economy of over $100 billion in GDP, and fast-growing exports, attracted foreign direct investment (FDI) of over $4.3 billion from various countries in 2021.
The country is eager to welcome Japanese investment in agro-processing, mining, tourism, ICT, and manufacturing, its envoy said.
The 8th TICAD high-level meeting this year will be held in Tunis. This will be the second time that TICAD is held in Africa, following TICADVI hosted by Kenya in 2016.
During the conference, it is expected that the political impetus will be laid for the further scaling up of the partnership between Japan and Africa based on their respective priorities, in particular, the African Union Agenda 2063.