SUMMARY by the Chair of TICAD III
1 October 2003
Commemorating the tenth anniversary of the TICAD process, the Third Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD III), one of the most important frameworks dedicated to African development, convened in Tokyo from 29 September to 1 October 2003. It included participation by delegates from 89 countries, including 50 African countries, 47 regional and international organizations, and civil society organizations such as NGOs. Twenty-three African Heads of State or Government, and heads of 22 organizations, who contributed greatly to the discussions, attended the Conference. The Conference also had high-level representatives including ministerial-level participants from partner countries including the G8 and Asian countries. TICAD III, chaired by former Prime Minister of Japan, H.E. Mr. Yoshiro Mori successfully demonstrated the united support of the international community for African development, New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) in particular, and the expansion of partnerships such as Asia-Africa cooperation.
In the opening session, H.E. Mr. Junichiro Koizumi, Prime Minister of Japan, delivered the keynote address, introducing three pillars of Japan's assistance to Africa, namely, "human-centred development," "poverty reduction through economic growth," and "consolidation of peace." He also outlined a new objective of extending a total of US$1 billion in grant aid assistance to directly benefit the people of Africa in arenas such as health and medical care, education, water, and food assistance. A message of the United Nations Secretary General was delivered, and the co-organizers of TICAD presented opening remarks. Speakers, emphasizing the importance of African development and praising Japan's commitment, set the underlying tone of the Conference. Aware of the current conditions in Africa, and sharing the recognition that solving those problems is important to peace and security and the prosperity of the international community as a whole, TICAD III allowed valuable discussions on issues related to African development in the 21st century including TICAD's role in mobilizing international support for NEPAD.
In concluding the opening session, H.E. Mr. Joaquim Alberto Chissano, President of the Republic of Mozambique and Chair of the African Union, addressed the participants as the representative of the African Union (AU), symbol of the new Africa. He observed that the TICAD process has proven to be an excellent framework for the promotion of partnership toward African sustainable development, proposing the establishment of a follow-up mechanism to the TICAD Conference to liaise with the NEPAD and all stakeholders.
- Ten Years of the TICAD Process
The Conference reaffirmed TICAD contributions over the last ten years towards providing a coherent philosophy on African development, raising awareness among the international community toward African development and broadening international support leading up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the G8 Africa Action Plan, among others. The Conference discussed the future orientation of the TICAD process including its support for NEPAD. The Conference, in particular, recognized the importance of the viewpoint of human security in addressing African development, and expressed the intention to advance this philosophy through the TICAD process. It was in this context that the Conference discussed and subsequently adopted "The TICAD Tenth Anniversary Declaration."
Members of the NEPAD Heads of State and Government Steering Committee gave presentations on the latest developments in NEPAD, and possible frameworks for cooperation by the international community through the TICAD process in support of NEPAD objectives, priorities, and programmes. Specifically, there was a call for emphasis on the New Rice for Africa (NERICA) Initiative in support of a Comprehensive African Agricultural Development programme. While emphasizing the need to improve infrastructure, agriculture, human resources, and Asia-Africa cooperation, the leaders pointed out the importance of concluding the Doha Development Agenda. Speakers repeatedly noted the importance of Africa's ownership and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). Strong hope was also expressed for strengthened NEPAD-TICAD ties, and for TICAD to continue serving as an essential platform for the international community to integrate its support for NEPAD. In addition, the TICAD co-organizers reiterated the need for active engagement with the NEPAD Secretariat at various phases of NEPAD's implementation.
Poverty Reduction through Economic Growth
Human security, the pivotal concept of TICAD III, is the underlying framework for poverty reduction. African Heads of State and Government outlined some of the prevailing conditions in their respective countries and addressed the African development agenda. They underscored the essential role of sustainable economic growth in reducing poverty, and confirmed their determination to promote the socio-economic development programmes of NEPAD. Yet another key to alleviating poverty is education. Some speakers noted that debt service is a burden for sustainable economic growth. Speakers urged that intensified efforts be made in key development areas such as agriculture, agro-industries, and rural development with consideration for the roles of women. There was a call for greater market access for the goods of least developed countries.
- Consolidation of Peace
- The Conference welcomed ongoing peace processes in Africa but shared concerns over the prevalence of unresolved conflicts and residual causes of conflict in Africa.
- There was consensus that prevalent conflicts are impeding the effective use of resources for economic development, and that prevention, management, and resolution of conflict are essential for development. The shared view was that the consolidation of peace is important in preventing the recurrence of conflict and constitutes an initial step towards development.
- The Conference recognized the roles of the U.N. as well as the AU and other regional organizations in addition to the active participation of certain countries, and urged intensified efforts by Africa and the international community to build institutional capacity of regional organizations and African countries for peace support operations, early warning, conflict prevention, management and resolution, and for the identification and removal of causes of conflict.
- The Conference agreed on the necessity for a comprehensive approach emphasizing concepts such as reviving communities and ensuring human security in activities to consolidate peace (e.g., disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR), support for refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), the reintegration of child soldiers, de-mining, and the regulation of small arms).
- Capacity Building
- The Conference appreciated the progress made in promoting NEPAD, which is being implemented by African countries. The international community recognized the essential role that ownership plays in enhancing governance. The conference also welcomed the launching of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) as a NEPAD programme and noted the need for broader international support for its processes.
- Institution building, and capacity building of administrative and legislative branches in supporting improvement in governance were recognized as important issues. Effective leadership, creditable institutions and sound policies are vital underpinnings to capacity building.
- The need for African governments to improve transparency and accountability through strengthening of check and balance mechanism was emphasized. Furthermore, it is crucial to implement government led-reforms that address corruption and misallocation of funds, and enhance accountability.
- The importance of clear commitments by both donors and African countries for a common policy framework for good governance was reiterated, and would be a result of proper implementation of the APRM process.
- Asian development experiences that demonstrated the importance of long-term, stable and sound socio-economic policies could play a significant role in capacity building in Africa.
- Human resources development is integral to establishing African ownership. The conference encouraged all African countries to promote and implement "Education for All (EFA)" initiatives, by increasing budget allocations to universal primary education and called for continued support by the international community for enhanced educational infrastructure and quality.
- A number of Asian countries presented their respective experiences in fostering human resources in post-war recovery processes. A similar number of Asian and North African countries noted their willingness to provide training as part of trilateral South-South cooperation mechanisms involving donor countries.
- The need for efficient strategies for reducing the impact of the "Brain Drain," including greater use of the capacities of the African diaspora, was noted.
- The importance of strengthening regional and sub-regional institutions of learning was reiterated.
- Human-Centred Development
* Health and Infectious Diseases
- The Conference underscored the seriousness of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, and identified it as one of the most serious threats to African development. In addition to confronting the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the serious impact of tuberculosis, malaria, and polio must be tackled. There was a view that while there has been significant increase in resource commitment, it is in no way commensurate with what is required, for example, further funding to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria remains essential.
- In recognition of the importance of Primary Health Care and the development of a regional health system as well as health education to deal with infectious diseases, which encompass grass-roots-level preventive and edifying measures, the Conference encouraged Africa and the international community to cooperate to improve access to appropriate medical services, especially in local areas with generally poorer populations.
- A South American nation shared its experience with a pilot project treating HIV/AIDS through the administration of retroviral drugs.
- The Conference recognized that the water supply issue as an important development agenda encompassing not only sanitary and environmental problems but also water-related disputes, the labour burden of water provision, and sustainable water use for industries including agriculture.
- Noting the MDGs, the Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development, the Ministerial Declaration and the Portfolio of Water Actions issued at the Ministerial Conference on the occasion of the 3rd World Water Forum, and the G8 Action Plan on Water, the participants agreed to exert continuous efforts to resolve water problems, particularly the provision of safe water. Recent analyses suggest that the MDGs are attainable, providing the consensus of earlier fora is implemented.
- The Conference recognized that organization is an important factor in managing water resources, and the existence of national water plans would provide legal frameworks for cooperation that would allow emphasis on ownership and responsibilities at the community level, as well as water resources management for major river basins.
- It is commonly recognized that social and economic infrastructure constitutes the basis for all economic activities; it is an essential factor in extending development efforts of Africa and the international society to local communities mired in poverty. A vivid example, in this regard, is found in how economic development in Asia has been predicated on solid infrastructure. NEPAD was praised for its moves on furthering infrastructure development.
- The Conference reaffirmed the importance of both adequate financial resources and prioritization in implementation. The Conference supports NEPAD and the African Development Bank in the implementation of the NEPAD Short Term Action Plan on Infrastructure, and the development of a Medium and Long Term Action Plan.
- It is noted that in view of the small size of African economies, there is a need for regional cooperation to achieve a unified and sustainable African economy. More efficient, effective infrastructure development can be pursued through giving priority to regional/sub-regional projects with positive, broad impacts and to Public and Private Partnerships (PPP) seeking capital to secure necessary financial resources.
- The participants were cognizant of the significance of information and communication technology (ICT) as a tool to establish inter-community networks that overcome geographical constraints, and enable various undertakings for development such as distance learning.
- The Conference took note of expectations for the work of NEPAD's e-Africa Commission. It is confirmed that the international community intends to address the digital divide in Africa in moving toward the World Summit on the Information Society at the end of 2003.
- Agricultural Development
- As agriculture is the backbone of African economies, agricultural and rural development is key to the economic growth of African countries.
- The participants concurred on the importance of technical assistance to raise productivity (e.g., facilitating development and the dissemination of NERICA, which is endowed with advantages of both Asian and African rice), in augmenting food self-sufficiency in Africa, as well as in cutting the vicious cycle of inadequate agricultural production and famine. Similar efforts to that which yielded NERICA should also be applied to other crops, such as maize, cassava, millets, and sorghums.
- With a view to maintaining and augmenting incentives for developing African agriculture, the Conference further recognized the importance of implementing support measures for assuring access to finance, land, technology and institutions, minimizing fluctuations in agricultural production and combating desertification.
- The participants supported the implementation of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP) developed by NEPAD and the FAO; the Conference encouraged continued long-term support by the international community to increase agricultural productivity. The Conference urged intensified efforts of both developed and African countries to improve market access for African agricultural products to the world.
- The persistence of famine and starvation is often due to structural causes that go beyond issues of climate and natural disasters. There is a strong need to make longer-term investment in agriculture.
- Private Sector Development
- In light of the fact that sustainable growth in Africa requires sound private sector growth in domestic economies, the participants shared the recognition that such growth would firstly require Africa's ownership in improving governance in the economic milieu, which makes such business activities profitable, including domestic market institutions, the financial sector, and commercial law systems (e.g., contract law).
- Moreover, while agreeing on the importance of nurturing the private sector, particularly above all the production sector, the Conference concurred that to achieve genuine African development, it was of the utmost importance for Africa to develop by way of its own efforts a national industrial basis through measures such as experience transfer from Asia and nurturing small and medium enterprises. Assuming the existence of such an industrial basis, in order to continuously produce high value-added products that are competitive on the world market, thus reaping benefits from the development of the entire world economy, the significant roles played by foreign direct investment (FDI) were pointed out.
- Private sectors need an overall enabling environment which allows private firms to operate efficiently, and specific institutions and policies that promote private sector development. The most important of these factors include macroeconomic stability, an efficient financial system, competitive markets, political and social stability, a legal framework, and policy framework. One of the key problems for private sector development in Africa is the lack of information, particularly relating to investment conditions and opportunities.
- In welcoming the World Bank's report on trade between Africa and Asia, the Conference was encouraged by the stable increase in trade including primary goods and investment between Africa and Asia. The participants were generally pleased by various TICAD process initiatives establishing networks between both regions (e.g., the Asian-African Business Forum (AABF).
- Expansion of Partnerships
- The Conference recognized the efficacy of South-South cooperation, especially Asia-Africa cooperation, in sharing lessons from the know-how and experiences that have enabled some Asian countries to achieve remarkable economic progress. This is relevant because of the initial low development levels of these Asian countries, and the high rate of growth achieved. Due recognition should be given to the appropriate and low-cost technology available from these countries for possible transfer to African countries. In this respect, there are excellent possibilities to establish cooperative networks in agriculture, capacity building, technological transfer, trade and investment, between African and Asian countries. In line with the willingness to contribute evinced by countries of Asia, the TICAD process will further promote Asia-Africa cooperation or trilateral cooperation on a continued basis.
- The Conference recognized the potentials of having TICAD work in synergy with the Initiative for Development in East Asia (IDEA), which began in 2002 to make intellectual contributions to world development by sharing the experiences of East Asia.
- The Conference welcomed the new dimensions of Asia-Africa cooperation under the initiative to hold the Asia-Africa Summit in Bandung in 2005 that will forge a new Asian-African strategic partnership. The Summit will also commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Asian-African Conference of 1955. The Conference confirmed that TICAD should work to establish mutually beneficial cooperation with the Bandung Conference process.
- With a view to facilitating Africa's ownership, the participants endorsed the efficacy of cooperation and experience sharing in such frameworks as trilateral cooperation among African and developed countries through other developing regions or other African countries, and intra-African cooperation centred on regional organizations. The Conference placed importance on international cooperation in the area of capacity building to support integration through regional organizations.
- Dialogue with Civil Society
- The general consensus was that a diverse civil society is crucial to functioning democracy. Engagement must involve all stakeholders. It is noted that the APRM also functions as an important initiative to ensure the activities of civil society.
- As such, the Conference welcomed the active participation of civil society as an important partner in African development. Civil society organizations made an important contribution during the TICAD Conference with open exhibits, lectures, and presentations of their activities. They contributed meaningful input to the preparation and planning for TICAD III.
- The Conference acknowledged complementary relations between endeavours of the state and public organs and those of civil society. In particular, the role of civil society organizations, international and domestic alike, should be understood and enhanced as facilitating community-based development. One example of such meaningful activity was seen in a Japanese NGO which promotes NERICA in agricultural development programs in Africa.
Concluding Remarks -- the TICAD Process: The Way Forward
TICAD III reaffirmed the significance of the 10 years of the TICAD process, under which initiatives for advancing African development have steadily yielded concrete outcomes. The Conference appreciated the contributions of the TICAD co-organizers including Japan, the U.N., the Global Coalition for Africa (GCA), and the World Bank, that have continuously led international support for African development through the TICAD process. The Conference also appreciated various efforts undertaken by both Africa and the international community and urged them to promote further cooperation based on the basic principles of ownership and partnership.
Meanwhile, the participants reaffirmed the conditions delineating Africa's position in the current international economic relations, and identified the daunting challenges in the priority areas of African development. The Conference recognized the lasting raison d'_tre of the TICAD process to be to correctly identify the priorities, mobilize international support for Africa, particularly in supporting implementation of NEPAD strategies and programmes, to expand partnerships within the international community to overcome those difficulties, and promote a bright African future. The Conference recognized the importance of continuing the TICAD process, and the TICAD co-organizers including Japan, the U.N., the GCA, and the World Bank committed themselves to continuing the TICAD process in a more institutionalized manner, regularly following up on outcomes of the Conference in response to the voices of several African Heads of States and Governments. The participants expect that the TICAD process, through the efforts of Africa and the international community as a whole, will be instrumental in ensuring that ownership and partnership, which have steadily assumed their proper role in the international community, evolve into solidarity between Africa and its development partners.
Closing remarks were delivered by the President of Gabon, followed by a message from the President of the World Bank Group as co-organizer of TICAD III. Repeatedly, throughout the Conference, participants and delegates expressed appreciation for Japan's continuing support for the vision of a better future for Africa, and for the warm hospitality shown by the people and the Government of Japan.
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