COP28: UNOSSC Side-event (Hybrid) to Commemorate 30th Anniversary of TICAD, 8 December 2023

December 6, 2023

Evolution of South-South Cooperation and triangular cooperation through the TICAD process: Relevance of Japan’s role in Asia for African development

  • Format: Hybrid
  • Date: 8 December 2023
  • Time: 9:00- 11:00 AM New York Time
  • Event Registration:
  • Venue: For on-site participants: Doha Conference Room, 11th Floor, 304 E 45th Street, FF Building, NY


I. The Tokyo International Conference on African Development – TICAD

The Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) was established in 1993 and is led by the Government of Japan and co-hosted by the United Nations (TICAD 1), and subsequently joined by the following co-hosts: the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (TICAD 2), the World Bank (TICAD 3) and the African Union Commission (AUC) (TICAD 5). The last Forum, TICAD 8, was held in 2022 in Tunisia. Over the years, the TICAD process has contributed to social and economic development in Africa through policy dialogues, development cooperation and trade and investment through private sector mobilization in public and private partnership. It has consistently engaged leaders and policymakers from Africa. For example, TICAD 8 had more than 20 heads of state and government and representatives from 48 African countries.

TICAD is a multilateral forum whose participants include not only African countries but also international organizations, partner countries, private companies and civil society organizations involved in African development. The conference focuses on various development challenges facing Africa, including economic growth, trade and investment, sustainable development, human security, and peace and stability. It serves as a platform for African countries and their partners to collaborate and devise strategies for sustainable development and poverty reduction in Africa. TICAD meetings are held periodically, with participation from various stakeholders, including African and non-African governments, international and regional organizations, private sector representatives, and civil society organizations. The two key development principles of the TICAD process have been “African ownership” and “international partnership” in support of Africa’s own efforts.2

II. TICAD 30th Anniversary

The commemorative symposium on the 30th anniversary of TICAD was held on the 26th of August 2023 in Tokyo, Japan. This event had the goal of reviewing the evolution of the TICAD process to date and to discuss the future direction of TICAD. In addition to this main event, development partners and member states were invited to organize side events until the end of 2023. It is in response to this call, and alignment with TICAD’s development principles of African ownership and international partnership, that UNOSSC is convening an interactive dialogue between experts drawn from Africa, Asia and the UN Development System, focusing on the role of the TICAD process on Africa’s development from a viewpoint of South-South and triangular cooperation.

III. South-South and triangular cooperation in TICAD

Japan is a pioneer country in triangular cooperation (TrC). Triangular cooperation is development cooperation involving Southern-driven partnerships between two or more developing countries supported by a developed country(ies)/or multilateral organization(s) to implement development cooperation programmes and projects. Elements of Japan’s TrC include coordination and financial support by Japan through JICA, comparative advantage analysis to mobilize expertise (knowledge or other technical expertise) from one developing country to support a receiving partner country. Japan’s TrC pattern also results in strengthening southern technical assistance provider countries’ technical cooperation expertise, such as JICA’s assistance to Indonesia in its effort to strengthen its capacity to provide South–South cooperation. Overall, TICAD’s approach to triangular cooperation is characterized by its emphasis on partnership and mutual benefit. It aims not only to provide assistance but also to create a platform for shared learning and co-development, recognizing the unique strengths and needs of each partner.

Triangular cooperation propelled Asian development, with Japan playing a catalytic role in assessing regional rather than individual country comparative advantages spurring Asian regional industrialization. Japan promoted policies that strengthened regional cooperation and institution-building. At the same time Asian countries pursued development strategies and policies (their export-oriented policies) motivated by Japan’s model resulting in economic prosperity and the rise of the Asian Tigers. And while the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) processes supported African development, Asia’s regional industrialization successes are yet to materialize in Africa.

The TICAD Forum’s 30-year history is rich with examples of South-South and triangular cooperation initiatives, projects, and linkages with not only Japan, but also with other countries supported by Japan.

In line with the above, the commemorative event will have the following objectives:

  1. Underpin the importance of triangular cooperation as a pillar of the TICAD process with some cutting-edge examples.
  2. Contrast regional industrialization strategies in Africa and Asia led by triangular cooperation and share lessons learnt.
  3. Assess possible new pathways for triangular cooperation through TICAD process and enhance the ownership of the regional industrialization strategy in Africa.

IV. Participants

This is a high-level event with eminent speakers and discussants from the United Nations, Japan, Japan’s triangular partners in Africa and Asia and, eminent academicians from the two continents. The event will be moderated by the President of the High-Level Committee (HLC) on South-South Cooperation and will highlight the support of the HLC Bureau to this important and timely event. All the permanent missions to the UN and the members of the UN interagency mechanism will be invited. Major stakeholders in TICAD in Africa and Asia will be invited as well.

Time Focus Proposed speaker
09:00-9:05 Welcome Remarks Director, United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation, Dima Al-Khatib
09:06-09:11 Message on Africa’s Development Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa to the United Nations Secretary-General, Cristina Duarte
09:12- 09:17 The strategic role of the AU, its agencies, and the RECs in Africa’s regional industrialization AUC Representative (TBC)
09:18- 09:23 Opening Remarks and Moderation Moderator- HLC President, H.E. Mr. Mohan Pieris, Permanent Representative of Socialist Republic of Sr Lanka to the United Nations.
Keynote Statement
09:24- 09: 44 Keynote Statement: Evolution of the TICAD process, SS and TrC inclusion in the TICAD processes, the Asian experience in regional industrialization, how TICAD can support Africa’s regional industrialization efforts Professor Mieko Ikegame, Former UN Focal Point for the TICAD Process and, Adviser to the CEO, the African Union Development Agency – New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA- NEPAD)
Statements by Member States and UN Regional Institutions
09:45-09:59 Indonesia’s role in Asia-Africa cooperation through SSC from Bandung Conference to date; TICAD’s achievement and role of Japan; H.E. Siti Nugraha Mauludiah, Director General for Information and Public Diplomacy, Indonesia
Regional Industrialization through ASEAN: Tunisia’s intra-African SSC Policy & achievements and Japan’s role in Africa’s development as TICAD host. TBC
10:00- 10:15 ECA’s support to the implementation of the AfCFTA (with a focus on regional industrialization) •      Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) Executive Secretary
Panel Discussion
10:16- 10:46 The moderator will ask the panelists to react to the presentations, in particular the keynote address, and then ask specific questions drawn to get up perspectives from their work and experience. The moderator will allow the exchange of views between the panelists and participants will be allowed questions or comments. Participants’ interventions will be limited to one minute. Panel Discussion and Contributions from the Floor Panelists: 1.     Jomo Kwame Sundaram – Malaysian Academic 2.     Prof. Mieko Ikegame- Former UN Focal Point to TICAD Processes and, Special Adviser to the CEO, AUDA-NEPAD 3.     Mr. Victor Djemba, Chief of UNIDO Regional Coordination Bureau, Africa, UNIDO 4.     AUC Representative (TBC)
Closing Remarks
10:57-11:00 Closing Remarks Director, UNOSSC Chair of Africa Group Moderator, HLC President