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President Weah Off to Japan for TICAD Summit

Executive Mansion/Maximilian Kasseh, Jr.
President George Weah departs Liberia
President George Weah departs Liberia

MONROVIA, LIBERIA- President George Weah departed the Country Saturday, August 24, for the Asian Republic of Japan to attend the 2019 Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD).

The Conference takes place August 28-30, 2019 in Pacifico, Yokohama.

TICAD is an international conference led by Japan and co-sponsored by the United Nations, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), World Bank and the African Union Commission (AUC).

The Liberian Head of State is joining 46 other African leaders also invited to participate in the 7th Edition of the Development Conference, which began in 1993 to specifically foster economic cooperation between African countries and Japan, Asia’s 2nd economic powerhouse.

President Weah is expected to hold bilateral discussions with Japanese officials and other African leaders at the conference, while the President is away, the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs and Chief of Office Staff, Nathaniel McGill, will act as chair of the cabinet in consultation with the Vice President via telephone contacts with the President.

The Liberian Leader is expected to be away for about a week.

Tokyo International Conference of African Development (TICAD)

By providing an opportunity for high-level policy dialogue, TICAD has become a major global platform through which Asian and African nations, as well as international stakeholders, can collaborate to promote Africa’s development.

Background

The Tokyo International Conference of African Development (TICAD) Description: External linkwas launched in 1993 by the Government of Japan, to promote Africa’s development, peace and security, through the strengthening of relations in multilateral cooperation and partnership, particularly with the country.

Coming at a time when aid fatigue had become apparent, the launch of TICAD was catalytic for refocusing international attention on Africa’s development needs. In the course of the past 20 years, TICAD has evolved into a major global and open and multilateral forum for mobilizing and sustaining international support for Africa’s development under the principles of African "ownership" and international "partnership.

Japan co-hosted TICAD conferences in:

1993 (TICAD I) Description: External link,

1998 (TICAD II) Description: External link,

2003 (TICAD III) Description: External link,

2008 (TICAD IV) Description: External link, and

2013 (TICAD V) Description: External link.

The First TICAD-V Ministerial Meeting was held in Yaoundé, the Republic of Cameroon in May 2014.

TICAD contributes to the facilitation and promotion of high-level policy dialogue between African leaders and Africa’s development partners on issues pertaining to economic growth, trade and investment, sustainable development, human security, peace and stability and government. Being a multilateral partnership, TICAD process also actively promotes South-South and triangular cooperation, in addition to traditional cooperation.

OSAA’s Role

In light of its mandate, the Office of Special Adviser on Africa (OSAA) is one of the five co-organizers of TICAD. The other co-organizers are:

The Government of Japan Description: External link,

The African Union Commission (AUC) Description: External link,

The World Bank Description: External link, and

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) .

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OSAA and the other TICAD co-organizers continue to increasingly engage the private sector and civil society in the TICAD process. Furthermore, they are closely monitoring the implementation of the Yokohama Action Plan 2013-2017 Description: External link, which is one of the outcome documents of the TICAD V Summit in Yokohama Description: External link, Japan, in May 2013.

In May 2014, OSAA, along with Japan, the AUC, UNDP and the World Bank, co-organized the first ministerial meeting of the Fifth Tokyo International Conference on Africa’s Development in Yaoundé, Cameroon, in May 2014. The meeting endorsed the implementation matrix of the Yokohama Action Plan 2013-2017. The Matrix Description: PDFDescription: External linkcontains 617 concrete development initiatives of African institutions and development partners, composed of 57 countries/organizations that plan to implement these initiatives by the end of 2017. OSAA, in collaboration with the AUC, particularly focuses its follow-up of Pillar 6 "Consolidating Peace, Stability, Democracy and Good Governance" of the Yokohama Action Plan.

On 2 June 2013, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addressed the fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD-V) and urged integration of Africa into the global economy.

Impact

Besides their strong focus on trade, investment and technical cooperation, Africa’s partnerships, including TICAD, have paid growing attention to the issues of peace and security, including peacekeeping, terrorism and organized crime.

For instance, as part of the TICAD-V framework, Japan committed to allocate $26 million to support the consolidation of peace and stability in the Sahel Region. At the last TICAD-V in Yokohama in 2013, the Government of Japan pledged 32 billion USD in five years from then, with an emphasis on infrastructure and human resource development, based on African ownership and international partnership.

Japan has disbursed $3.5 billion in ODA to support the implementation of the matrix, representing 25 % of the $14 billion in ODA committed at the Conference, as a part of the overall $32 billion that was pledged.

 


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