"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Remarks by H.E. Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, at the Opening Session of the TICAD V Ministerial Preparatory Meeting

[Place] Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
[Date] March 16, 2013
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

Your Excellency Mr. Hailemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia,

Your Excellency Dr. Tedros Adhanom, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia,

Your Excellency Mr. Erastus Mwencha, Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission,

Honorable ministers and ambassadors,

Heads of delegations and distinguished delegates,

Ladies and gentlemen,

I am Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan.

As I begin my address, I would like to express my heartfelt welcome on behalf of the Government of Japan and also the TICAD Co-organizers: the United Nations, the African Union Commission, the United Nations Development Programme, and the World Bank.

I would also like to express my cordial appreciation to Prime Minister Hailemariam and to all the officials of the Ethiopian government for their extensive cooperation as both the host country of this meeting and the country chairing the African Union. I would like to pay my respect to the leadership of Prime Minister Hailemariam, who is playing a leading role in making great advances in continuation of the wishes of the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, who dedicated his life to fostering prosperity in both Ethiopia and Africa.

In addition, together with the Ethiopian government, I would like to express my appreciation to the African Union for hosting this Ministerial Preparatory Meeting. Under the leadership of Chairperson Dlamini-Zuma, the world is paying close attention to the African Union, which has commenced new progress forward. Through the African Union Commission becoming a TICAD Co-organizer, we are able to have discussions rooted in African ownership. This contributes to the deepening of the TICAD process and I heartily welcome this development.

My distinguished colleagues, TICAD has now turned twenty years old. The upcoming TICAD V in June also has historic significance as it will be held in the 50th year since the founding of the Organization of African Unity (OAU).

TICAD has been developing steadily ever since Japan launched it in 1993 together with African countries. By following that path, TICAD has followed through on its unique philosophy which is a source of pride internationally.

First, TICAD has championed African ownership. NEPAD, the first development program arising through Africa's own efforts, has come into existence, grounded in a philosophy of ownership in which Africa pursues, by its own efforts, a developmental directionality that Africa itself desires. Moreover, the African Union has been launched, and under the ownership of the AU, conflict resolution and continental agendas have come to fruition.

Second is that TICAD has honored its commitments to Africa. Over the years, TICAD has steadily fulfilled the targets it set to foster African development and then followed up on them. The pledges that Japan set forth at TICAD IV to double its total ODA to Africa and to assist in doubling the amount of Japanese private investment into Africa have already been achieved now, five years later. I report this state of affairs to you with great pride.

Third, the most important thing is TICAD's unshakable belief in Africa's potential. TICAD has, from its inception, promoted Africa's latent potential to the world and called for a strengthening of partnerships with the international community that would lead to the flowering of that untapped potential. From the periods of difficult time in the past until the present, it has been TICAD that has drawn attention to the importance of not only aid but also private investment in Africa.

I paraticipated in TICAD IV in 2008 as Minister of State for Science and Technology Policy, and I myself feel deeply honoured again at being able to engage in TICAD with this marvelous history as Foreign Minister this time.

I would like to make the upcoming TICAD meeting held once every five years a success through the cooperation of all of you gathered here today.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Africa is now commanding the attention of the international community as the next economic frontier. Africa, which in the past suffered from poverty and conflicts, has now become a new source of hope full of bright light. It is truly a "dynamic continent."

TICAD V should be an opportunity to further brighten Africa's rays of hope, illuminating all who live on the African continent. Africa has begun to travel down the path to prosperity, marking remarkable economic growth. I would like to think together how to make the path more solid and how to remove obstacles to prosperity, should there be any.

Ladies and gentlemen,

As our first effort in preparation for TICAD V, Japan has decided to provide assistance in the amount of about US$550 million in order to ensure peace and stability, which are an important foundation for growth and prosperity. This amount includes a contribution of US$6 million to AFISMA, which is a manifestation of Africa's own determination and efforts to foster stability in the Sahel region.

I firmly believe that walking together with Africa will bring about the further development and prosperity of not only Japan but also the international community as a whole.

Based on this conviction, I would like to put forth "Hand in hand with a more dynamic Africa" as the overarching theme of TICAD V.

Ladies and gentlemen,

TICAD is one of the most important pillars of Japan's foreign policy. I myself am determined to guide TICAD V to a success conclusion with certainty by carrying forward TICAD's twenty years of history and developing it further, investing my full-out efforts. In order to do that, I wish to welcome Africa's heads of state and government to Japan through the kind cooperation of my distinguished colleagues in attendance today.

I would like to close my remarks with my hope that at this preparatory meeting we thoroughly discuss the outcomes for which TICAD V should aim and the main issues to be taken up, and that we are able to forge the foundation for making TICAD V a success.

Thank you very much for your kind attention.