Japan’s Engagement with Africa

In modern times, Japanese and African relations can be traced back to the 1960s when Japan started its Official Development Assistance (ODA) program to Sub-Saharan Africa with the aim of promoting economic development and welfare. The oil crisis in the 1970s made Japan shift its strategy in Africa by developing stronger links with a wider range of nations but keeping a focus on oil exporter countries such as Nigeria.
With the end of the Cold War and collapse of Soviet-sponsored states in Africa, Japan’s interest in locating strategic partners in the continent only grew. Its strategy remained fairly unchanged though, as Japan continued to use foreign aid and loans as a driver of foreign policy in Africa. From 1991 to 1997, Japan had ranked top amongst the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) peers and became a leading donor for several states in Africa.

Brief on the Education Sector across Africa

Education is the central piece that propels economic growth. A country can be rich in natural resources, but if its population lacks education, it will continue to be poor and dependent on foreign help. Singapore is probably the best example of this statement: a city-state, with no natural resources, but ranking 3rd as the largest GDP per capita in the world, according to the IMF. This achievement would never have been reached if education had not spread throughout all the socio-economic layers of its population since the country’s independence in 1965.
Moving from Singapore to the countries in Africa, the gap in education is staggering. This article will present a picture of the state of education in the continent of Africa and how it is placed in a global context.