AFRICAN COUNTRIES URGED TO INVEST IN SUSTAINABLE BLUE ECONOMY

Kenya co-hosted with Japan and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) a side event on Sustainable Blue Economy on the margins of the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD7) meant to mainstream the blue economy in the Ticad process, seek in-depth partnerships as well as to sustain momentum on the Blue Economy agenda in Kenya and within Africa.

The event was attended by President of Seychelles H.E Danny Faure, Cabinet Secretary James Macharia and Cabinet Secretary Amb Ukur Yatani.

The side event provided another unique opportunity to exchange views on how best to advance the global sustainable Blue Economy, after the successful Sustainable Blue Economy Conference in Nairobi in November last year.

It was noted that in developing countries Blue Economy remains largely underutilized yet it has been recognized as the great engine of growth and prosperity and the driver of industrialization in the developed world.

“The Oceans and the seas and other water sources are some of oldest sources of livelihood among our fore fathers, but remain more of a catch-all than a unified and integrated concept. Most African communities remain ‘sea blind’ noted the President in a speech read on his behalf by Treasury CS Amb Ukur Yatani.

He called on developing countries to comprehensively integrate blue economy into development programs.

“The policies around this huge sector quite often are handled separately from other sectors of development and yet this sector can drive economic growth, promote social stability and prosperity as well as environmental protection. This is a gap that we need to close if we are to strengthen coherent planning and coordination that can improve on existing development processes and lead to robust and genuinely sustainable development”.

He welcomed the current global interest in sustainable development and called for collaboration as a means to end poverty.

“The current global interest in the development and conservation of the resources of a sustainable blue economy are welcome in augmenting efforts aimed at poverty eradication, food and nutritional security and overall development of our people. But we can do more through enhanced partnerships”.

He called on the global community to embrace and create awareness of the importance of oceans and water with explicit coordination and planning not just at national level, but at the regional and international levels and noted that its only through the successful development of the blue economy that we can realize the UN 2030 Agenda and AU’s Agenda 2063.

He reiterated the need for all stakeholder to fully embrace commitments made during the Sustainable Blue Economy Conference held in Nairobi which he noted have the potential to stimulate and deepen collaboration between and among governments and stakeholders on blue economy, and to help align the blue economy with the needs of the society. He said the commitments hold the key to unlocking the full potential of the ocean, seas, lakes and rivers and accelerating economic growth, job creation and poverty eradication while at the same time conserving the environment.

Turning to Kenya, the President said his Government’s long-term policy objective is to achieve a strong and sustainable economic growth, providing a high quality of life for all citizens by the year 2030.

He noted the challenges that hinder progress such unsustainable human activities that threaten marine life through dumping of toxic materials that threatens to wipe out the aquatic life ecosystem. It is estimated that by 2050, there will be more plastic materials in numbers and weight than fish.

Japan is in the frontline in the fight to reduce marine plastic litter pollution to zero by 2050 under the auspices of the “Osaka Blue Ocean vision”. Kenya has shown its commitment by banning the production and trade in plastics in its environment including in the ocean, lakes, rivers and other water masses.  The President called on every individual and every nation to declare zero tolerance to marine plastic litter and ‘walk the talk’.

As land resources continue to diminish the developing world in particular was challenged to show collective determination and commitment to efforts at the local, national, regional and international levels to intensify investment in the blue economy sector to create millions of jobs and accelerate economic transformation.

Japan’s leadership in renewable sources of energy, deep-sea mining, Research and Development (R&D) in marine biotechnology and submarine digital systems are all cutting edge technologies that Africa can benefit from.

KENYA HOSTS A DIASPORA FORUM @ TICAD7 IN JAPAN

The Diaspora forum took place on the margins of the TICAD VII Summit in Yokohama, Japan. The theme of the forum was ‘’Leveraging Diaspora for knowledge, skills and innovation exchange and sharing to strengthen Africa-Japan Development Partnership for sustainable industrialization’’.

The Diaspora forum comprised of panel discussions involving Ministers, select experts from various fields especially Banking and Finance, Business and Industry, Education, Diaspora, and Labour migration. Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Amb. Dr Monica Juma delivered a key note address and reiterated the importance of the diaspora network globally as a resource for skills development in Africa.

“The Diaspora and their networks abroad are an important resource and reservoir of knowledge and skills. Consequently, the transfer of these resources from the Diaspora to our home countries is crucial for facilitating research and innovation as well as skills development in African countries”.

She said she was convinced that African Diaspora, across the board, is eager to get more and more involved in developing their countries of origin, not just by giving money, but also by transferring their skills, knowledge and expertise. Adding the need to provide them with an enabling environment and structured programmes to do so. She urged them to therefore strive to work with your national authorities to jointly formulate policies and programmes to increase the Diaspora contribution to our continent’s socio-economic development. 

The expected outcome of the forum is to come up with concrete and pragmatic outcomes which will substantially contribute to exploiting the skills and innovativeness of yourselves as the African Diaspora in Japan, to bolster the existing strong partnership between Africa and Japan for the benefit of our continent.

She noted that Kenya diaspora has contributed immensely to the development of the country through established framework and innovative products and tools offered by the private sector designed to facilitate the Diaspora in transferring back home some of their resources, particularly remittances, investments and skills.

The Diaspora forum at TICAD VII Summit was organized jointly by the Government of Kenya, the African Union, and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and brought together the African Diaspora in Japan and various stakeholders including governments, private sector, and international organizations to share Diaspora contributions to knowledge, skills and innovations and private sector engagements to promote Japan-Africa socio-economic development partnerships. Approximately 10,000 Africans live in Japan.

TICAD7 CONFERENCE ON AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT SUMMIT IN YOKOHAMA, JAPAN

President Uhuru Kenyatta joined other Africa Heads of State and Government at the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development Summit (TICAD7) in Yokohama, Japan. He is accompanied by Cabinet Secretaries Foreign Affairs Monica Juma, Education CS Prof. George Magoha, Transport and Housing Infrastructure, Urban Development CS James Macharia, Health CS Sicily Kariuki and National Treasury and Planning CS Amb. Ukur Yatani Kanacho. This year’s TICAD7 summit is focused on ‘Advancing Africa’s Development through People, Technology and Innovation’.  

 

The Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) is held every three years to review progress in the implementation of TICAD projects across Africa. Kenya was the first African country to host the TICAD VI conference outside Japan in 2016 in Nairobi. The TICAD process is a development partnership between Japan, Africa and international partners.

 

Kenya is privilege to host four side events during the conference that are crucial to her developed programme. She will host: The Blue Economy co-hosted with Japan and UNDP, Diaspora side event organized with IOM, Kenya Business forum, and the Buildup side event on the upcoming International Conference on Population and Development ICPD25. 

 

In a recent interview Cabinet Secretary Foreign Affairs Amb Monica Juma said Kenya focus is on optimizing the resources available in Japan for the delivery of the Big 4 agenda in agriculture, affordable housing, universal health care and manufacturing.

 

“We will be negotiating to access opportunities in terms of resources in terms of investment portfolios that Japan has to offer within the framework of TICAD”

 

The Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) started in 1993 and has been serving as a pioneering multilateral forum for international cooperation on African development. It is a unique process that has contributed remarkably to Africa’s development and regional integration agenda. The forum promotes synergy with strong communication among Africa, Japan and the international community and values the sense of equality and mutual benefit, based on the principle of African ownership and international partnership.

 

Over the last 25- years engagements between Africa and Japan has deepened under the TICAD process where the issue of ownership of the process by the Africans themselves became more pertinent in the interest of sustainability and inclusivity.

 

Leaders attending the summit this year will evaluate the status of implementation of TICAD VI, and consider new challenges and emerging issues to African development, while show-casing available opportunities and avenues for investment that can anchor sustainable development and partnerships for Agenda 2063 mainly in tourism, energy, innovation, science and technology, and quality infrastructure to support inter-regional connectivity that can facilitate seamless flow of goods, services and people.  

 

Africa through the African Union will be showcasing the opportunities provided by the entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), the implementation of cross-border infrastructure projects, the advancement of agriculture and industrialization systems, as well women and youth empowerment programs.

 

TICAD VII Conference is planned within three pillars: Accelerating economic transformation and improving environment through innovation and private sector engagement, Deepening Sustainable and Resilient Society; and Peace and stability, fundamental prerequisites for social-economic development.

 

The Summit will adopt the Yokohama Declaration and Action Plan, whose implementation will focus on Africa’s key areas including Capacity Building, STI, health and nutrition security, technology and innovation, industrial investment, trade promotion, quality infrastructure, green and sustainable development, poverty reduction and peace and stability.

 

DEPUTY PRESIDENT ATTENDS RECEPTION FOR THE NEWLY APPOINTED ENVOYS

Deputy President, H.E.Dr.William Ruto has asked newly appointed Ambassadors and High Commissioners to align their Missions agenda to the Presidents big four,” the big four agenda is your rule book it must define your mission as you serve, it will make Kenya a globally competitive and phosphorus nation”. Said the Deputy President.

He was speaking on Monday during a reception for the newly appointed Ambassadors and High commissioners at the intercontinental Hotel Nairobi, after two months induction program.

The DP called on the Envoys to manage Kenya’s image out there well, saying Kenya’s perception beyond our borders will determine our economic prospects, “the importance of a positive national image in the promotion of our trade and economic interests cannot be overstated, a good brand also underwrites our suitability as an investment destination”, said the Deputy President.

He challenged them to be strong advocates of Afrocentric interests as well, arguing that the continent holds huge economic promise that is yet to be fully utilized. The DP argued that the promotion of the intra-African trade should be prioritized sighting the recent ratification of AFCTA by African countries which aims at integrating trade and people to people movement across Africa borders.

Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Amb.Macharia Kamau,said the campaign for Kenya to capture the United Nations Security Council non-permanent seat for the 2021-2022 term is on, following the endorsement by the Africa Group in Addis Ababa-Ethiopia. “We need to rally other African countries and the World towards getting a universal endorsement of Kenya’s candidacy,” said Amb. Kamau, adding that Kenya will work zealously towards projecting, protecting, and promoting the interests of the continent at the council if elected at the UNSC seat.

The Deputy President also congratulated the new Envoys on their appointment, and the Ministry staff led by the Cabinet Secretary Amb.Monica Juma, and the Principal Secretary Amb. Macharia Kamau for leading a spirited fine-tuned campaign that resulted in Kenya’s endorsement for the elections at the United Nations Security Council for a non-permanent seat for the 2021-2022 term.

CS JUMA: UPHOLD INTEGRITY IN SERVICE DELIVERY ENVOYS URGED

Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Ambassador Monica Juma, has called on the newly appointed envoys to show personal leadership in articulated Kenya’s interest abroad and demonstrate high integrity in their service to their country. Drawing attention to the government’s position on zero tolerance to corruption, the Cabinet Secretary urged the envoys to ensure that they manage government resources well.

The Cabinet Secretary was speaking in Mombasa when she presided over the closing ceremony of the six weeks Induction Course for the newly appointed Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Consul-Generals, appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta in July 2019.

She urged the envoys to embrace the national development Agenda in their new role as is stipulated in the economic pillar of Kenya’s Foreign policy in order to achieve the President’s Big 4 Agenda. 

CS Juma congratulated the cohort of 34 envoys including 12 women Ambassadors for completion of the six weeks intensive training course. “I can proudly confirm the readiness of all the 34 Ambassadors and High Commissioners Designates to project, promote and protect Kenya’s national interests across the world…I am very delighted to have graduated 12 women in this cohort in line with President Uhuru Kenyatta’s commitment to the women empowerment agenda.” She said.

She emphasized that Diplomacy calls for a higher degree of competency in form of knowledge and skills backed by commitments to uphold established practice and professionalism.  The course was therefore meant to equip the envoys with relevant skills that would go a long way to help them articulate Kenya’s brand, uphold Kenya’s dignity and integrity, deliver national interests while represent the President of the Republic of Kenya and the 45 million Kenyans at the international stage.

Cs Monica Juma expressed her delight for Kenya’s endorsement to vie for the Non-Permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the period 2021-22 in a vote held on Wednesday 22nd of August in Ethiopia’s Capital, Addis Ababa. “ This endorsement brings an opportunity to advance regional peace, security and economic agenda and provide a platform upon which Kenya will further articulate its foreign agenda while building bridges of friendship and partnership.” She said

In attendance were Amb. Macharia Kamau, Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary, Amb. Tom Amolo, Political and Diplomatic Secretary, Amb. Simon Nabukwesi, Director, Foreign Service Academy, Amb. Galma Boru, Programme Co-coordinator and other senior officials of the Ministry.

KENYA GETS AFRICAN UNION ENDORSEMENT FOR THE UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL SEAT-2021-2022

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, August 21, 2019


1. The African Union has endorsed Kenya’s Candidature for the United Nations Security Council. The candidates that had expressed interest in the seat from the Eastern Region were Kenya and Djibouti. In an election held by the African Union Permanent Representatives’ Committee earlier today, Kenya got overwhelm support from members present scoring 37 votes against Djibouti 13.


2. Djibouti congratulated Kenya for a well-deserved win.
Amb Mohammed Idris Farah of Djibouti “I congratulate Kenya for a well deserved win and I am sure kenya will ably represent our great continent at the UNSC”

3. Ambassador Catherine Muigai- Mwangi, Kenya Amb. to Ethiopia and Permanent Representative to AU commended Djibouti for its commitment and passion to serve and pledged to take on board some of the important issues that Djibouti was keen to include in the AU Agenda at the UN Security Council.


4. Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amb Monica Juma congratulated the African Union Permanent Representative Committee for putting their trust on Kenya.


“I wish to thank the AU PRC members for this determination. This endorsement is an affirmation that Kenya has remained true to the decisions and aspirations of the African Union and confirms that it is a safe and dependable pair of hands. Kenya commits to the African brothers and sisters, that we shall be a bold voice for Africa and shall steadfastly promote and defend the African position”. CS Monica Juma


5. The African Union will present Kenya (Eastern) to the UNSC for elections to be held in New York in June 2020 to serve for a period of two years (2021-2022), subsequently joining Niger (Western) and Tunisia (Northern) that were elected in June 2019 to serve in 2020-2021.


6. Given Kenya’s Foreign Policy which is strongly afro-centric, the elections to the UNSC will give the country the opportunity to build consensus across regional and global matters that affect Africa.

INTERNATIONAL YOUTH WEEK

Magarini, Kilifi 10th August 2019…Young officers in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs led by their Patron Ambassador Christopher Chika celebrated the International youth week in Magarani Youth Empowerment centre in Kilifi County.
The National Youth week marks the start of celebrations culminating to the International Youth Day – observed every August 12 as designated by the UN General Assembly in 1999.
The theme of this year’s IYD is ‘Transforming Education’, which Kenya has domesticated to “Boresha Elimu, Wezesha Vijana’, translating to ‘make education better, empower youth’.
During the long day activities the Ministry youthful officers held conversations with fellow youths on various topics including youth mentorship, national values, promotion of environmental conservation, good governance, peace and conflict resolution and later joined the youths in planting trees to mark the occasion.
The event was graced by Ms. Safina Kwekwe, PS for Gender Affairs in the Ministry of Public Service, Youth, and Gender Affairs and  Hon. Michael Kingi MP for Magarini.
The officers will visit Kwale County and later attend the National youth celebrations which will be graced by  H.E President Uhuru Kenyatta.