Mahama Seeks Japanese Help

President John Dramani Mahama on Wednesday called for a partnership between Africa and Japan through private sector empowerment to strengthen infrastructural development. He said Japan had over the years been a worthy partner that had contributed to the socio-economic development of the continent, and that sustaining that partnership would scale up development, particularly with the inclusion of the private sector. President Mahama made the call when he participated in the second Japan-Africa Regional Economic Communities� Roundtable Summit on infrastructure development. The programme, which attracted other African presidents and their representatives, was to renew their commitment to the cooperation they had enjoyed over the years with the Asian country. Japan is currently providing a total of 650 million Japanese Yen to support African countries in the areas of water, transport and Information Communication Technology (ICT). President Mahama said Ghana was in constant discussions with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to improve infrastructure in the areas of transport, water, roads, health and railways. He said various African countries had been engaged in individual development that had not improved intra African trade, indicating that Japan could be instrumental in bridging that infrastructural deficit. �Infrastructural development in Ghana and Africa is critical since formerly it was internal development, but now we need to promote Intra African Trade and free movements of goods and services,� President Mahama added. The president said Ghana�s partnership would also move up in the areas of oil and gas, as Japan has rich expertise in the area, adding that their cooperation in the traditional areas would remain intact. President Mahama commended the Japanese government for the solidarity and support and pledged the support of other African countries to ensure future fruitful cooperation.