TICAD V: 20 Years of partnership between Japan and Africa

Image: Flickr, International Maritime Organization
Image: Flickr, International Maritime Organization

From 1 – 3 June 2013, Yokohama plays host to the Fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V), a high-level exchange between Japan and Africa which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.

Created by Japan in 1993, TICAD promotes regular high-level dialogue and has been a major feature of Japan’s partnership with the continent, drawing from its own development experience and the role it played in the so-called ‘East Asian Miracle’.

African countries have grown tremendously over the past few years – the continent has multiplied its domestic resources by more than five times in the last twelve years. Japan has been a key supporter of this growth, providing grant aid, concessional loans as well as technical support. Yet Africa remains the most unequal population in the world, with high levels of unemployment, particularly among the youth, exacerbated further by rising demographic growth rates.

The onus is now upon African leaders to ensure optimum benefits by considering how to capitalise on this growth so that it facilitates broad-based and inclusive development.