NAIROBI, Kenya, April 2 – Japan’s new Ambassador to Kenya, Okaniwa Ken, has pledged to promote and strengthen relations with Kenya for the benefit of both countries.
The Okinawa ambassador was among nine envoys who presented their credentials to President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday.
Japan’s mission to Kenya noted in a statement that for many years the East Asian nation has provided aid to support Kenya’s development in education, health, agriculture, energy, forestry, infrastructure and others.
“Kenya is the largest recipient of Japanese ODA in the Sub-Saharan Africa region. In recent years, reflecting Kenya’s rapid economic growth, there has been an increasing emphasis on business cooperation,” the Japanese Embassy said.
The Japanese Embassy pointed out that there are currently 103 Japanese companies physically present in Kenya, up from 35 in 2014.
He further said that in August, Japan will co-host TICAD (Tokyo International Conference on African Development) in Tunis which he said will play a key role in enhancing cooperation between the two. country.
Kenya co-hosted TICAD 6 in Nairobi in 2016 for the first time in Africa.
“The Ambassador hopes that TICAD 8 will be an opportunity to further strengthen the fruitful and extensive cooperation between the two countries,” the Japanese Embassy said.
Ambassador Okiniwa arrived in Kenya on December 28, 2021.
Prior to his deployment to Kenya, he served as Ambassador/Deputy Permanent Representative of Japan to International Organizations in Geneva.
“As a diplomat, he has extensive experience in development cooperation, public diplomacy, climate change and a wide range of multilateral issues,” the embassy said.
The president on Friday received diplomatic documents from ambassadors Michael Lotem (Israel), Yeo Sungjun (Republic of Korea), Okaniwa Ken (Japan) and Abderrazzak Laassel (Morocco).
The others were Callista Jennie Mutharika (Malawi), Marie Charlotte (Philippines), Tareque Muhammad (Bangladesh), Gabriela Martinic (Argentina) and Christopher James Thornley (Canada).
Speaking at the ceremony, the President reiterated Kenya’s commitment to cementing bilateral relations with the new envoys in the respective countries and wished them success as they begin their mission in the country.
“We are ready to strengthen the relationship between our two nations to create opportunities for our citizens,” President Kenyatta told the Israeli Ambassador.