During the 2016 TICAD summit, Japan appeared to woo its African counterparts by emphasizing what China has long been criticized for: shoddy quality of projects. Speaking with African heads-of-state in Nairobi, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe did not name China but certainly alluded to the issue of quality. He asserted, “It is Japanese companies that are committed to quality…our hunch is that the time has come to make the best of Japan’s capabilities…for the advancement of Africa, where you seek nothing but quality in your socio-economic development.”
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe seemed enthusiastic about his commitment to quality projects in Africa and traveled to Nairobi with 75 Japanese companies interested in the continent. In addition to brands such as Toyota and Fuji, producers of cosmetics, noodles, sweets, artificial hair and medicines were also included. During this conference, Japan also promised 30 billion USD in public and private support for infrastructure development, education and healthcare expansion in the continent. This is supposed to be administered in a three-year time frame. About 500 million USD is slated for vocational training of 50,000 African youths, in an effort to help them enter formal economies and dissuade them from joining terrorist groups.
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