Japan $1 billion aid earmarked for northern Africa

Japan earmarks $1 billion development, humanitarian aid for boosting northern African security

Associated Press
Japan $1 billion aid earmarked for northern Africa
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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers a speech as U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, second from right, listens during the official dinner hosted by Abe at the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Yokohama, near Tokyo, Sunday, June 2, 2013. Japan announced Sunday a plan to provide 100 billion yen ($1 billion) in aid over the next five years to northern Africa for economic development and humanitarian efforts, including help with security and counter-terrorism measures. (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) -- Japan on Sunday announced a plan to provide 100 billion yen ($1 billion) in aid over the next five years to northern Africa for economic development and humanitarian efforts, including help with security and counter-terrorism measures.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced the assistance in a speech at a conference in Yokohama, near Tokyo, where officials from 50 African nations have gathered to talk about trade, growth and other issues.

The $1 billion is part of the 3.2 trillion yen ($32 billion) in government and private-sector aid announced Saturday.

Japan is eager to court Africa, which is rich in resources and is growing as a market, after having fallen behind Asian rival China in trade with and infrastructure projects in Africa.

The three-day conference, which ends Monday, has been held every five years since 1993.

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