September 2, 2019
From August 28 (Wednesday) to August 30 (Friday), Mr. Yoshihiro Seki, State Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, attended the Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD 7). State Minister Seki had meetings with leaders and top officials of participating African countries and exchanged opinions on the strengthening of bilateral business relationships. Additionally, he attended the Japan-Africa Business Forum & EXPO and other official side events of TICAD 7.
1. Meetings with VIPs of African countries
(1) Meeting with H.E.M. Andry Nirina Rajoelina, President of the Republic of Madagascar (August 28)
State Minister Seki explained the national government’s measures for supporting Japanese companies’ investment, such as the expansion of the system of the Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI). President Rajoelina expressed his gratitude for Japan’s contribution to the development of Madagascar and also expressed his hopes for further assistance from Japan in such fields as electricity and water, which require continuous development.
(2) Signing ceremony for the MOU on the promotion of the photovoltaic generation project in Western Zambia (August 28)
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has supported the photovoltaic generation project in Western Zambia through a feasibility study. State Minister Seki attended the signing ceremony for the MOU between Toyota Tsusho Corporation, etc. and the government of Zambia, together with H.E. Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu, Zambian President, and H.E. Dr. Sahar Nasr, Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation.
(3) Meeting with H.E. Mr. Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal (August 28)
State Minister Seki congratulated President Sall on his re-election. He also expressed his gratitude for President Sall’s leadership in strengthening the bilateral relationship. President Sall expressed his gratitude for Japan’s efforts in facilitating the economic development of Senegal and stated his commitment to proceeding with domestic reform for activating further investment.
(4) Meeting with Hon. Ms. Paula Ingabire, ICT and Innovation Minister of the Republic of Rwanda (August 30)
State Minister Seki expressed his optimism for the strengthening of the relationship with Rwanda, which aims to become an ICT-oriented country, in the field of ICT and innovation. Minister Ingabire expressed appreciation for the favorable bilateral relationship so far and expressed her hopes for the further development of the relationship.
(5) Meeting with H.E. Ms. Betty Maina, Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives of the Republic of Kenya (August 30)
State Minister Seki commented that Japanese companies are very interested in business in Kenya and that the government of Japan intends to continue support for business expansion. Principal Secretary Maina expressed her hopes for the enhancement of added value to be brought about by the entry of Japanese companies in various fields including manufacturing and agriculture.
(6) Meeting with Hon. Mr. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius, and attendance at the reception celebrating the opening of the Japan office of the Economic Development Board of Mauritius (August 30)
State Minister Seki expressed his expectation for the strengthening of bilateral economic relationships through the utilization of the Japan office of the Economic Development Board of Mauritius. Prime Minister Jugnauth expressed his hope for cooperation in a broad range of fields. After the meeting, State Minister Seki attended the reception celebrating the opening of the Japan office and delivered a speech welcoming the opening of the office. He also attended the signing ceremony for the MOU on cooperation in attracting investment in Mauritius between the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and the Economic Development Board of Mauritius.
2. Attendance at Official Main and Side Events of TICAD 7
(1) Attendance at the “Japan-Africa Business Forum & EXPO” (August 28)
State Minister Seki attended the “Japan-Africa Business Forum & EXPO” and saw Japanese companies’ booths. Additionally, he attended kagamibiraki (a ritual to open a sake barrel by breaking its lid with a wooden hammer) to celebrate the opening of the business forum and EXPO.
(2) Reception party hosted by the Prime Minister and the Mayor of Yokohama City (August 28)
State Minister Seki attended the reception party hosted by Prime Minister Abe and Yokohama City Mayor Hayashi and developed relations and exchanged opinions with related parties from Africa and Japan.
(3) Attendance at “Powering African Innovation” (August 29)
State Minister Seki attended “Powering African Innovation,” one of the official side events of TICAD 7, held by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and expressed his desire for further innovation in Africa and also commented on METI’s support for improving access to electricity, which is indispensable for promoting innovation in Africa.
(4) Dinner party hosted by the Prime Minister (August 29)
State Minister Seki attended the dinner party hosted by Prime Minister Abe and developed relations and exchanged opinions with leaders and top officials of African countries.
(5) Attendance at “Large-Scale Agriculture/Food Processing Projects in Sierra Leone” (August 30)
State Minister Seki attended the “Large-Scale Agriculture/Food Processing Projects in Sierra Leone,” one of the official side events of TICAD 7, held by Itochu Corporation, and delivered a speech.
This project is the first cooperative project in Africa after the MOU on reinsurance was signed between NEXI and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), a member of the World Bank Group, in May 2018.
Division in Charge
Africa Office, Trade Policy Bureau