Africa-Japan Business Investment Forum to explore expansion & investment avenues in Africa
The second Africa-Japan Business Investment Forum currently being held in Ethiopia is an important event for the continent as Japan now ranks as the most active Asian project finance sponsor in Africa, investing almost three times as much as China, which is often regarded as the most active Asian investor on the continent.
The second Africa–Japan Business Investment Forum is being held from 31st August to 2nd September in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, bringing together some of the key actors in the Japanese and African business and government circles.
Hosted by the government of Ethiopia, the conference is designed to boost ties between African and Japanese business networks and to share best practices and opportunities between the two.
The upcoming Forum, convened jointly by top African publisher IC Publications and the leading financial and business media group in Japan, Nikkei Business Publications (Nikkei BP), will focus on key investment sectors such as infrastructure, finance, agri-business, commodities, energy, logistics and technology.
There will also be a special dialogue on ‘Africa-Japan Partnership: Growth through collaboration’.
Japan has always been a highly strategic partner of Africa and has remained steadfast in its support, since the establishment of the first Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in 1993.
Since then, the nature of Japan-Africa relations has undergone significant changes with trade between the two partners currently standing at USD 25 billion. In 2014 Japanese investors accounted for USD 3.5 billion of the USD 4.2 billion of project funds that Asian nations poured into Africa, notably in infrastructure, hydrocarbon and water and sanitation-related projects.
Japan now ranks as the most active Asian project finance sponsor in Africa, investing almost three times as much as China, which is often regarded as the most active Asian investor on the continent. Alongside the focus on agriculture-led growth, major investments by Japanese multinational corporations including Toyota and Honda show that Africa is being seen more and more as a region with great business potential.
This August meeting in Addis Ababa is the second Africa-Japan Business Investment Forum – and the first to be held in Africa. It comes on the back of the Japan-Kenya Infrastructure Conference which took place in Nairobi in July 2015.
With the stronger emphasis on exploring mutually beneficial opportunities for expansion and investment in Africa, further plans are underway to alternate TICAD venues between Africa and Japan. In 2016, the global development conference which is held every three years will most likely be held in Kenya.
This would be the first time that Africa hosts the international conference on African development.