Remarks by Mr. Estifanos Afewerki, Eritrea’s Ambassador to Japan and Dean of the African Diplomatic Corps (ADC)
Ambassador Estifanos welcomed Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group (AFDB) and his team who are currently visiting to Japan, Korea and China and he made the following remarks:
• “As you all know, the 6th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV) will take place in Nairobi, Kenya on 27-28 August 2016. The African Diplomatic Corps here in Tokyo has been working hand in hand and very successfully with Mr. Masayuki and his predecessor Mr. Tamagawa, Heads of the External Representation Office for Asia African Development Bank, to put our continent’s priorities into the agenda of the business community of Japan.
• “Our group is also is in the process of working very closely and continuously with the co- organizers of TICAD VI to help in structuring the outcome of the coming Nairobi summit to reflect the common Africa position of Agenda 2063, (the first ten-year implementation plan), i.e. to address industrialization, health, water, sanitation and social stability of our continent. AfDB’s proactive continued support to this endeavor is recognized and highly appreciated by the African Diplomatic Corps here in Tokyo.”
• “. . . Africa is representing the world’s highest economic growth arena in the world today. Africa has now entered into an age of investment as opposed to just traditional aid. There is an increasing move towards leveraging aid for greater trade and investment and towards supporting small and medium sized enterprises, which are the backbone of African economies. AfDB’s recent agreement with the Government of Japan on this cardinal issue resonates with the efforts and continued dialogue that our group has been making with the business community here in Japan
• “In our collective efforts here, we have recently reviewed past plans and commitments of the TICAD process. This included the Enhanced Private Sector Assistance (EPSA) Initiative of Japan to support implementation of the AfDB’s Strategy for Private Sector Development. We believe the current enhancement of this initiative can greatly contribute to the different programs of our national and sub-regional development programs of our continent.”
• “Realizing the cardinal role that investment could play in our African countries’ development imperatives, the AfDB through the EPSA initiative of Japan can be a key catalyst, to encourage investment and corporates to play an active constructive, and when needed a proactive role in the development and utilization of the continent’s natural resources, expanding exports, fostering transfer of technologies and SME’s development, agriculture, fisheries and marine resources, manufacturing, tourism, infrastructure, transpiration, other services and free zones.”