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TICAD

Summary of the Chair of TICAD IV
Yokohama, May 30, 2008

[Français]

The Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV), a Summit-level international policy forum dedicated to African development, convened in Yokohama, Japan from 28 to 30 May, 2008, marking the fifteenth anniversary of the TICAD process. TICAD IV brought together 51 African countries, 74 international and regional organizations, private sector, civil society organizations and notable individuals, all of whom contributed greatly to the discussions. Also participating in the Conference were representatives from 34 partner countries, including the G-8 and Asian countries.

In the opening session, H.E. Mr. Yasuo Fukuda, Prime Minister of Japan, delivered a keynote address. In his address, he announced Japan's intention to double its ODA to Africa by 2012. The Prime Minister pledged to offer up to US$4 billion of ODA loans to assist Africa in developing mainly its infrastructure as well as to double its grant and technical cooperation over the next five years. He also pledged to extend financial support of US$2.5 billion, including the establishment of the Japan Bank International Cooperation (JBIC) Facility for African Investment, and take other measures to encourage increased private Japanese investment in Africa with the aim of doubling Japanese foreign direct investment to the continent. The Prime Minister stressed Japan's resolve to work together with African countries and the international community towards a Vibrant Africa in a spirit of Afro-optimism.

H.E. Mr. Jakaya Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, made a keynote address in his capacity as the Chairperson of the African Union Assembly, in which he expressed his appreciation for Japan's commitment to assistance for Africa as articulated in Prime Minister Fukuda's speech. He also stated his highest expectations that Japanese investment, coupled with a further expansion of trade between Japan and Africa, would contribute greatly to Africa.

Under the overarching theme: "Towards a Vibrant Africa: a Continent of Hope and Opportunity", the Conference identified the following three priorities:

  1. Boosting economic growth;
  2. Ensuring "human security," including the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the consolidation of peace and good governance; and
  3. Addressing environmental issues and climate change.
    Emphasizing the critical relevance of these issues, African leaders and their international partners shared ideas on how to enhance and accelerate African development.

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General Overview: Fifteen Years of the TICAD Process

The Conference reaffirmed the contributions of the TICAD process to African development over the past 15 years, noting its significant role in mobilizing the international community's interest and commitment to African development and broadening international partners' support for African efforts to alleviate poverty and accelerate economic growth.

The Conference noted that many African countries have made steady improvements in the consolidation of peace, good governance, economic growth and social development in recent years. The continent's economic growth rate has improved significantly, from less than 3% in 1999 to 5.3% in 2006, and to a projected 5.9% in 2007. Sound economic policy has also resulted in improved levels of trade and investment in many cases. The Conference recognized and commended the efforts of African countries and urged the continued support of the international community.

1. Yokohama Declaration

The "Yokohama Declaration" was presented and adopted. The Declaration summarized the outcome of the TICAD process over the past 15 years and confirmed the continuing political commitment of Japan and other partners to African development. The "Yokohama Action Plan," outlining measures to be implemented through the TICAD process during the next five years and a "TICAD Follow-up Mechanism" to monitor implementation and assess the impact of the TICAD process, were introduced. The Declaration also noted Japan's commitment to present the outcome of TICAD IV to the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit to be held from 7 to 9 July 2008.

2. Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize, First Ladies Program, and seminars and symposiums

* Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize

TICAD participants welcomed the inception of the Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize, designed to recognize, elevate and mainstream research regarding tropical medicine and health activities in Africa. The first Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prizes were presented during the Conference. Prof. Miriam K. Were of the UZIMA Foundation, Kenya, received the medical services award and Dr. Brian Greenwood of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK, received the medical research award. The laureates in each category are internationally recognized for their contributions of many years to African health activities and medical research. The Prizes were awarded at a presentation ceremony graced by the presence of Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan.

* First Ladies Program

In parallel with the Conference, the First Ladies of African countries and Japan exchanged views on maternal and child health care. The Japanese First Lady introduced the "Maternal and Child Health Handbook," in which mothers record their own health condition and that of their unborn children right up to birth, as well as the development of their babies afterwards. The significance of the Handbook was shared among the participants to protect maternal and fetal health and reduce the infant mortality rate and to safeguard the health of mothers and children in Japan.

* Seminars and symposiums

Various seminars and symposiums were organized by the Japanese government, local governments, international organizations, and the private sector to provide opportunities for the participants to access diverse information on Africa and exchange views.

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Development Agenda

1. Boosting Economic Growth

* Infrastructure

* Trade, Investment and Tourism

* Agriculture and Rural Development

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2. Ensuring Human Security

* Community Development

* Education

* Health

* Consolidation of Peace

* Good Governance

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3. Addressing Environmental Issues and Climate Change

* Mitigation and Adaptation

* Water and Sanitation

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4. Broadening Partnerships

* Asia-Africa Cooperation

* Intra-Africa Cooperation

* Public-Private Partnership

* "African Development Frontiers"

* Dialogue with Civil Society

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Concluding Remarks: Towards a Vibrant Africa

TICAD IV participants welcomed the Yokohama Declaration and the forward-looking and action-oriented Yokohama Action Plan that introduced a range of initiatives under each priority area. They also welcomed the establishment of a TICAD Follow-Up Mechanism to ensure regular monitoring of the implementation process in response to the request of African leaders.

There was agreement among participants that the 15 years of the TICAD process have resulted in a number of achievements for African development, providing a strong foundation for the initiatives contained in the Yokohama Action Plan. The TICAD process has also seen an evolution towards greater African ownership of its development, stronger cooperation between TICAD and the AU/NEPAD, as well as an expansion of strategic partnerships, including Asia-Africa cooperation, with the private sector and civil society. The TICAD process has also proven to be an important vehicle for advancing progress towards the achievement of the MDGs.

Closing remarks were delivered by H.E. Mr. John Kufuor, President of the Republic of Ghana, on behalf of the participants. Throughout the Conference, participants expressed appreciation for the co-organizers' (UNOSAA, UNDP and World Bank) efforts and Japan's continued commitment to the TICAD process and for the warm hospitality shown by the city of Yokohama, the people and the Government of Japan.

The Participants welcomed the intention of the Government of Japan to take advantage of its position as the chair of the G8 to reflect the outcome of TICAD IV at the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit scheduled from 7 to 9 July, 2008.

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