UNIDO held an online roundtable discussion with the African Diplomatic Corps (ADC) in Japan in preparation for TICAD8, on February 9th, 2022. Nearly 50 ambassadors and diplomats attended the meeting with acute attention to support programmes and activities for investment opportunities in Africa.
The main objective of the event was to provide the ADC with a synopsis of UNIDO objectives and efforts to encourage investment prospects in crucial sectors, data on the latest progress and on technologies already transferred to Africa under UNIDO. Participants also discussed the possibility to feature investment promotion and technology transfer activities during TICAD8, and to expand networking and collaboration with UNIDO.
H.E. Mr. Elloumi, Ambassador of Tunisia and Chair of ADC’s TICAD Committee, opened the event with welcome remarks and appreciation to all the participants. Ambassador Elloumi further underlined the strategic partnership between UNIDO and ADC to enhance the industrial development of Africa in alignment with Agenda 2063 of the African Union and Agenda 2030 of the UN.
His welcoming message was followed by introductory remarks from H.E. Estifanos Afeworki Haile, Ambassador of Eritrea, and Dean of the ADC. In his remarks, Ambassador Estifanos explained the objectives and achievements of UNIDO, which has provided support to the national development agendas of various African countries to achieve industrial development, and highlighted UNIDO’s role as a key partner in organizing TICAD8.
Ms. Matilda Muweme, Senior Industrial Development Officer at UNIDO then provided an overview of UNIDO’s contribution to Agenda 2063 under the 3rd Industrial Development Decade for Africa (IDDAIII), and also underlined UNIDO’s major thematic focus and areas of cooperation in various African development sectors, by providing examples of projects undertaken.
As a follow-up to Ms. Muweme’s presentation, Mr. Yuko Yasunaga, Head of UNIDO ITPO Tokyo presented UNIDO’s efforts and contribution to promoting investment and technology transfer to Africa from Japan, through delegate programmes, seminars, investment promotion, and STePP demonstration projects, and provided concrete case studies of projects and activities undertaken with African countries.
A discussion moderated by H.E. Mr. Elloumi invited participants to address their needs and concerns regarding projects and sectors they support or intend to support in collaboration with UNIDO and in line with TICAD8. During the discussion, Ambassadors and diplomats stressed the need to invest more in SMEs, green technology, science, innovative and sustainable technologies, pharmaceutical industry, capacity building, entrepreneurship, job creation, and start-up programs for youth in Africa.
The event confirmed the need and importance for further collaboration to promote industrial development between Japan and Africa at the 8th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD8), which will be held on August 27-28, 2022.