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What AU chairperson, Moussa Faki said at TICAD7

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki has urged all participants of 7th edition of TICAD that held in Japan to maximise the opportunity gained.

Faki stated this while delivering his keynote address.

Read the detailed speech below:

It is an honour for me to paticipate in this meeting in the beautiful city of Yokohama, which has become accustomed to welcoming us.

First of all, I would like to extend my respects to His Majesty NARUHITO, Emperor of Japan and to commend the right Honourable Prime Minister Shinzo ABE and his Government for the quality of the arrangements made for the organisation of this 7th edition of TICAD.

The commitment of Japan as translated into the TICAD process is a good example of constructive multilateralism. I welcome its inclusion of the United Nations, the World Bank and other public and private partners around the world.

TICAD has progressively built a strategic partnership between Africa, Japan and other partners. The quality of this partnership stems from the consideration of the priorities expressed by Africa and its commitment to the principle of ownership of this multilateral platform.

Today, 23 years later, the results of TICAD are here to show the progress made. To the credit of this dynamic partnership, it is important to stress the principles of the rotation of the organisation of the Summit, which confirms another fundamental principle of the equality of our partnership

Since the August 2016 Conference in Nairobi, Kenya, Africa welcomed the entrenchment of our partnership in equality, mutual respect, understanding and benefit.

Japan, on its part, has been imbued with the mechanisms and decision-making processes in place in the African Union and has become fully conversant with the strategic objectives that guide the action of our Heads of State and Government, as stated in Agenda 2063.

Over time, the basis of TICAD has been consolidated through our constant quest for consensus in solving the problems facing our common destiny.

In such a context, the theme of this 7th TICAD, “Promoting the development of Africa, through people, technology and innovation”, is of particular interest.

In fact, as from January 2017, the African Union initiated the process of its institutional reform in order to adjust its operational configuration to the changes in the political and economic environment in the world and to equip itself with the means to respond with real efficiency to the aspirations of its citizens.

The recurrent needs in education, health and social mobility have been compounded by new demands to address issues of gender, youth, migration, refugees, displaced persons and the many challenges of the population on the Continent.

We remain fully mobilised to ensure the benefits to be obtained from the demographic dividend on the Continent as part of our efforts to make our Continent more hospitable and attractive in every respect.

Despite the impress progress made, studies reveal that we continue to suffer from a real deficit in technology and innovation. We hope that TICAD7 will enable us to come up with innovative solutions for the massive training of young people and women in these fields.

From the prospect of Africa’s accelerated development, the Heads of State and Government decided, within the framework of the institutional reform, to transform NEPAD into the Executive Development Agency of the African Union (AUDA). This Agency will be mandated to execute the projects and programmes that will be contained in the Yokohama 2019 Plan of Action.

In parallel to the process of institutional reform, the African Union has continued to consolidate its efforts in Regional and Continental integration. The launching of the African Continental Free Trade Area in July 2019 in Niamey, Niger, supplemented other flagship projects of the ongoing African Agenda.

TICAD is called upon to give a clear support to these projects on which depends the success of the Continental Free Trade Area.

Africa is on the move. It is progressing despite pockets of conflict and public health emergencies like Ebola. It advances by drawing from its own intellectual resources to address and offer solutions to its various conflicts.

On that score, the signing on 6 August 2019 of the Peace Agreement between the Government of Mozambique and the armed Opposition RENAMO, is to be commended.

The resounding success of the African mediation in Sudan has was instrumental in the establishment of the political arrangements for a democratic transition in Sudan. These two recent examples provide irrefutable proof that African problems are best solved by Africans themselves.

Silencing the Guns by 2020, a flagship project which will also be the AU theme for next year, finds its relevant place here.

The African Union has embarked on an operational trajectory of executing a set of continental projects and programmes in response to the demands of its citizens and to ensure a dignified participation and role of the Continent on the international scene.

We are aware that this double ambition requires the exceptional mobilisation of financial resources, better economic governance and a step-change in the fight against corruption, tax evasion and capital flight.

Industrialisation backed by a network of infrastructures, as underscored by President Al Sissi, Chairman of the African Union, that also includes the need to increase the competitiveness of African economies for wealth and job creation on the Continent.

It is thus appropriate to call for the implementation of the agreed Plan of Action within the framework of TICAD.

I would like to address a final word to the Japanese investors. The strong representation of the private sector of Japan at TICAD VI, held in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2016, had raised great hopes across the Continent. It is highly desirable that these hopes are not dashed.

There is an urgent need to promote strategies to reap the desired benefits from Japan’s established expereince in wealth-creation through its SMEs and SMIs.

Accordingly, AU Member States, aware of the strategic role of SMEs and SMIs and of the urgent need to attract both domestic and foreign private investment, are paying close attention to the improvement of the business climate on the Continent.

I just attended the G7 Summit in Biarritz, France. Together with other African Heads of State, I conveyed the message for the urgent need to close ranks to ensure the emergence of a new multilateral world order. There is no peaceful future for humanity in the neglect or underdevelopment of the African continent. TICAD 7 is called to echo this message here in Japan, in this city Yokohama so close to our hearts.

Africa knows what it wants. It wants its partners to adapt and work on the basis of the African development roadmap, which is Agenda 2063, that of the Africa we want.

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