Diplomatic Bluebook 2014 Summary
Japan’s Foreign Policy that Takes a PanoramicPerspective of the World Map
1. Overview of TICAD V and the Outcome
The Fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V) was held in Yokohama on June 1–3, 2013. The conference ended as one of the largest summit meetings ever held in Japan with the participants totaling more than 4,500, including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Minister for Foreign Affairs Fumio Kishida, as well as representatives from 51 African countries including 39 heads of state and government, delegates from 31 development partner countries and Asian nations, 72 international and regional organizations, the private sector, NGOs and civil society. In addition, a variety of side events were held with much attendance from the public.
TICAD V upheld the core message of “Hand in Hand with a More Dynamic Africa.” Under the concept, active discussions were conducted on the future of African development, centering on the main themes of TICAD V, namely “Robust and Sustainable Economy,” “Inclusive and Resilient Society,” and “Peace and Stability.”
In his keynote speech, Prime Minister Abe announced the basic policy of Japan on assistance to Africa, along with an assistance package comprising up to approximately 3.2 trillion yen (32 billion USD) in public–private initiatives, including approximately 1.4 trillion yen (14 billion USD) in official development assistance; capacity building for business and industry, including through “African Business Education (ABE) Initiative”; and development and humanitarian assistance to the Sahel region. In addition, TICAD V adopted two outcome documents, namely, “Yokohama Declaration 2013,” presenting a future direction for African development, and “Yokohama Action Plan 2013–2017,” a road map for the TICAD Process over the next five years with specific measures.
2. Relationship with Africa after TICAD V
Since TICAD V, Japan has actively deployed its diplomacy toward Africa in order to maintain the momentum and to steadily implement its pledges. For example, the Japan–African Regional Economic Communities (RECs) Summit Roundtable was held in New York on the margins of the UN General Assembly on September 26, 2013, chaired by Prime Minister Abe. In the roundtable, participants exchanged views on agricultural development and food security. In addition, from November 24 to December 5, 2013, Japan dispatched a Public and Private Sector Joint Mission for Promoting Trade and Investment for Africa to the Republic of the Congo, the Gabonese Republic, and Côte d’Ivoire. Thus, Japan hopes to further develop its relations with Africa through such follow-up measures to TICAD V. Furthermore, Prime Minister Abe visited three African countries in January 2014, fulfilling his promise at TICAD V to visit Africa in the near future.