A show of support for Africa's development agenda: Japan pledges US$32 billion in public and private fundsListen /
Leaders from 50 African countries and international partners have vowed to work hand in hand to deliver quality growth and sustainable development to Africa, as the Tokyo International Conference for African Development (TICAD V) wrapped up on Monday.
At the same time, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced his country would contribute US$32 billion to scale up TICAD's agenda in Africa over the next five years, focusing on peace and stability, building robust and sustainable economies and promoting inclusive and resilient societies.
The funds are expected to help the continent in areas including trade, infrastructure and private sector development, health, agriculture and agro-processing. They include US$1 billion in development, humanitarian and security assistance for the Sahel region and an initiative to help tens of thousands of Africans find jobs.
Delegates issued the Yokohama Declaration which calls on African countries to unleash the continent’s business and trade potential while improving well-being through agricultural development, job creation and promotion of food security.
Under the Action Plan issued on Monday, Africa will aim for six percent growth in the agriculture sector and a doubling of rice production by 2018 from its 2008 level.
The declaration and action plan concluded three days of reflections on the economic and development achievements of the African continent since 1993 and challenges over the next five years.
UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark says "The challenge for Africa now is to transform economies so that agriculture becomes more productive, manufacturing flourishes, and high value service industries emerge".
Donn Bobb, United Nations.