TICAD Ministerial-level Meeting

December 6, 2001
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan

1. Overview

(1) On December 3-4, 2001, the Government of Japan, along with the United Nations (OSCAL and UNDP), GCA (Global Coalition for Africa) and the World Bank, hosted TICAD Ministerial-level Meeting. More than 400 participants from 52 African countries, 28 Asian / European / North American countries and 32 international / regional organizations participated. In addition, sessions titled "Dialogue with the Business Community" and "Dialogue with the Civil Society" were held.

(2) The meeting welcomed President Konare of Mali (the keynote speaker) and 44 ministerial-level participants (including one minister from Asia). Other notable participants included Mr. Mark Malloch Brown, Administrator of UNDP, Dr. Frene Ginwala, Co-Chairperson of GCA (also Speaker, South African National Assembly) and Mr. Koichiro Matsuura, Secretary-General of UNESCO. Representing the Government of Japan were Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Minister for Foreign Affairs Makiko Tanaka, Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Seiken Sugiura and Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs Taimei Yamaguchi.

(3) In the meeting, substantive discussions took place on TICAD II review and on NEPAD (the New Partnership for Africa's Development), the development initiative by African people themselves. Also, participants exchanged views on focused areas (foundations of development, investing in people, poverty reduction through economic growth) and focused approaches (South-South cooperation, regional cooperation, IT for development). These discussions were eventually integrated into the Chair's Statement.

(4) On the occasion of the meeting, numerous bilateral meetings took place. For instance, number of meetings involving high-ranking officials of the Japanese Government alone totaled 31, including those by the Prime Minister (with President Konare), the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Senior Vice-Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary. Several members of the Japanese Diet also had bilateral talks with the participants.

2. Evaluation

(1) Japan's active stance toward Africa was recognized

TICAD Ministerial-level Meeting took place following Africa-related events such as the dialogue with the leaders of developing countries (including heads of 3 African countries) on the occasion of the G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit (July 2000), the visit to Africa by then Prime Minister Mori (January 2001) and visits by African leaders to Japan including Nigerian President Obasanjo (May 2001) and South African President Mbeki (October 2001). The meeting impressed the international community with Japan's active diplomatic stance toward Africa. The presence of many high-level participants should be considered the expression of high expectation for Japan's efforts.

(2) Support to TICAD process was reinforced

Participants highly appreciated the timeliness of TICAD Ministerial-level Meeting, which called for the importance of tackling the issues which Africa is facing, while the international community faces terrorism threat. Participants also recognized the contribution which had been made by the TICAD process in raising awareness and interest in Africa's issues. The validity of the Tokyo Declaration issued in TICAD I and of the Tokyo Agenda for Action adopted in TICAD II was confirmed in the meeting, thus solidifying the continued effectiveness of the TICAD process. In this regard, the meeting contributed to maintaining the international community's momentum toward TICAD III.

(3) Synergy between TICAD and NEPAD was emphasized

The meeting provided the first-ever opportunity for the international community to meet together and thoroughly discuss NEPAD. Through comprehensive briefing by South Africa which has been one of the driving forces of this African-born initiative, high-level participants from development partner countries and organizations were able to obtain up-to-date information regarding NEPAD. NEPAD shares with TICAD the underlying spirit and the goals of "ownership" and "partnership." The enhanced understanding among development partners on the need to support NEPAD through the strengthening of the TICAD process could lead to further promotion of NEPAD.

(4) Future of the TICAD process was foreseen

Some developments were seen lately on African development. They include the increasing interest in Africa at multilateral forums such as the UN and the G8 Summit and the widening scope of partner involvement as seen in the launching of ministerial-level forums hosted by EU, US and China respectively, as well as in the efforts by traditional partners such as UK and France. Another trend is the increased interest in taking on relatively new issues Africa is facing, such as trade and investment, conflict prevention and HIV/AIDS. Under these new developments, the next challenge for all TICAD-related parties toward TICAD III, which is expected to be held in the latter half of 2003, would be to find new "added value" of the TICAD process, with due consideration to the TICAD's comparative advantages. Given the strong interest which was shown by all participants in the dialogue with the business community, one idea may be to further integrate the private-sector and the civil society into the TICAD process as "development partners."

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