TICAD7 Highlights Business-based Solutions for SDGs, Climate Goals in Africa
Yokohama, Japan / Viviane Okubo on Unsplash
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The conference endorsed the ‘Yokohama Declaration 2019,’ which addresses achievements, outstanding issues and continued collaboration and actions to advance progress under its three pillars: accelerating economic transformation through innovation and private sector engagement; increasing the sustainability and resilience of society; and strengthening peace and stability.

During the conference, UNDP launched two partnership frameworks, and signed a partnership framework for cooperation with Kanagawa Prefecture to accelerate local government engagement towards achieving the SDGs.

30 August 2019: The Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD7) highlighted business-based innovative solutions for inclusive and sustainable economic and social transformation in Africa, and for meeting climate goals and the SDGs. The gathering revealed that, despite progress made on the SDGs in Africa, which has six out of the world’s ten fastest growing economies, a funding gap remains, with an estimated USD 600 billion and 1.2 trillion per year required to implement the SDGs.

The conference convened under the theme, ‘Advancing Africa’s Development Through People, Technology and Innovation,’ in Yokohama, Japan, from 28-30 August 2019. It was organized by UNDP, the Government of Japan, the African Union Commission (AUC) and the World Bank.

Addressing the conference, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said that “little undermines development like disaster,” which can wipe out decades of Africa’s sustainable development gains overnight, citing deadly Cyclone Idai in Mozambique in early 2019 as one example of a disaster made worse by climate change. He supported Africa’s right to ask big emitters like China, the US and India to reduce their emissions and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Guterres said that, throughout Africa, long-term drought is causing insecurity, for example in the Sahel, and emphasized the economic benefits of investing in climate-resilient infrastructure with its 4 to 1 benefit-cost ratio.

Little undermines development like disaster, which can wipe out decades of Africa’s sustainable development gains overnight.

Speaking to participants, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Achim Steiner emphasized the private sector’s role in Africa’s development and in realizing the SDGs, and the importance of economic transformation through innovation and business, sustainable and resilient society, and peace and stability. He stressed the need to harness digital technologies to allow for better access to information and finance so that even those furthest behind can benefit from technological innovations.

The conference endorsed the ‘Yokohama Declaration 2019,’ which addresses achievements, outstanding issues and continued collaboration and actions to advance progress related to TICAD7’s three pillars: accelerating economic transformation through innovation and private sector engagement; increasing the sustainability and resilience of society; and strengthening peace and stability. The accompanying Yokohama Plan of Actions 2019 lists actions expected to be implemented by TICAD partners to promote the three pillars.

To enhance partnerships between the Japanese and African private sectors and to generate business-based solutions for the SDGs, UNDP launched two partnership frameworks during the conference: a tripartite partnership with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japan External Trade Organization focusing on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); and a bilateral partnership with Japan Association of Corporate Executives to increase engagement of the Japanese business community in Africa. UNDP Administrator Steiner also signed a partnership framework for cooperation with Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, to accelerate local government engagement towards achieving the SDGs.

TICAD is a multi-stakeholder platform for discussing issues relevant to and advancing Africa’s development. [UN News Story] [Remarks by the UN Secretary-General] [UNDP News Story] [Yokohama Plan of Actions 2019] [TICAD7 Website]


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