Opening Remarks by Abdoulaye Mar Dieye at the TICAD 12th Ministerial MeetingAug 24, 2017
Honourable Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, President of the Republic of Mozambique,
Honourable Oldemiro Julio Marques Baloi, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Republic of Mozambique,
Honourable Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan,
Honourable Sam Kutesa, Minister of Foreign Affairs f Uganda
Honourable Ministers and delegates in attendance
Co-organizers and colleagues
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
There are few places in this word that display sublime charm and mystic magic, so powerful and enchanting, that you can only be inspired by the muses, when you visit them.
Graciosa Maputo ranks very high in that exclusive club!
We are then blessed to have our 11th Ministerial meeting, here in this most welcoming city; and I would like to thank the Government of Mozambique for its generous hospitality.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Our TICAD Ministerial meetings have been quite instrumental. They are the locus where we shape the TICAD Agendas, monitor the action plans, and give further impetus for implementation. Overtime, they have grown in vitality, depth and reach. They have become special moments to renew and reinvigorate this unique spirit of partnership, and inject added momentum and energy to Africa’s development Agenda.
Judging from the deliberations of the experts meeting and side events held during the last two days, I am pleased to see that the tradition is maintained. Our meeting can then inspire brighter development prospects for the continent and can further translate the TICAD Strategy into enhanced development actions and outcomes.
As shown by the 2017 African Economic Outlook, 2016 was a difficult year, with regional growth dipping to 2.2%, the lowest growth in more than 2 decades. A modest recovery in growth is expected in 2017, but this fall short of the past trend of 5.0%, and too low to put Africa back on its emergence track. The dip in international commodity prices has seriously affected growth. A major lesson from this development is that Africa is yet to maximally learn from primary commodity price cycle by successfully modernizing agriculture and effectively transforming its economy from, mostly primary commodity sector to value added secondary and tertiary sectors that promote inclusive and sustainable growth and development.
TICAD has all the ambition and potential to contribute to that process given its full congruence with the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063. As agreed in Yokohama, during TICAD V, and in Nairobi, last year, during TICAD VI, if we invest massively in the continent ‘s structural economic transformation, human security and resilient institutions and societies, private sector development, youth employment and gender equality, peace and stability, then Africa’s path to inclusive and sustainable development will be further amplified, secured and made irreversible.
As we take stock, during our meeting, on how we have collectively performed, so far, and how we would guide further implementation, I would also suggest, in our deliberations, that we consider the following imperatives, which are sine qua none for sustainable development in the continent, and which can advance the future evolution of TICAD, and help plant the seeds and shape the contours of TICAD VII.
First, the imperative to ensure that the various regional and international initiatives on Africa, work in synchronicity. TICAD has demonstrated its integrative value and its instrumentality as one of the most central global partnership on Africa. We could, down the road, review how it relates to other initiatives; and how all initiatives collectively contribute to Agenda 2063.
Second, the imperative to ensure that all initiatives foster regional integration; as only through regional integration can Africa get out of the syndrome of fragmented markets. The question, therefore, is: How can we use the three pillars of TICAD VI to effectively accelerate regional integration in Africa?
Third, the imperative of seeing Africa beyond its challenges, and building massively on its opportunities. Today, Africa offers one of the highest business profitability in the world, with many countries such as Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Gabon, Mozambique, Rwanda, Senegal and Zambia having the highest Business Profitability Index. I call on Japanese businesses to leverage these opportunities.
Addressing these imperatives can strategically position TICAD as a partnership of choice, further frame the future of all development initiatives and stretch development frontiers in Africa, in a secured and irreversible way.
I wish our Ministerial Meeting all the success.
And I thank you.