, TOKYO, Japan, Mar 13 – President Uhuru Kenyatta held talks with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday, agreeing to deepen Kenya and Japan’s partnership in areas ranging from infrastructure development to fighting terrorism.
President Kenyatta and Abe discussed investments in the energy sector focused on geothermal power development, scholarships for Kenyans especially in the maritime field, infrastructure, funding Kenya’s universal health care plan, and ending the threat of terrorism around the globe.
Prime Minister Abe announced a raft of new initiatives to support Kenya, offering a $33 million facility for President Kenyatta’s flagship universal healthcare plan, as well as interest in power, maritime and other high-end infrastructure projects in the pipeline.
President Kenyatta called for partnership in fighting terrorism, and combating radicalisation by exchanging intelligence information.
He encouraged more direct links between the two countries’ respective national security and intelligence agencies.
“We would also do well to partner more closely in border and maritime security management in screening, investigation and enhancing our counter-terrorism capabilities,” President Kenyatta said.
He said Kenya and Japan should also encourage collaboration with international partners in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism.
Prime Minister Abe agreed, saying: “We want to work with Kenya to secure stability in Africa.”
President Kenyatta commended Japan’s review of its Official Development Assistance (ODA) Charter to include cooperation and funding of non-military security projects.
“The non-military assistance – in the amount of US $200 million – to countries affected by terrorism in the Middle East and Africa is a very welcome gesture,” the President said.
He applauded the cooperation between Kenya and Japan at the bilateral and multilateral levels, saying his visit to Japan provides an opportunity for the two countries to forge closer ties and consolidate their strategic partnership.
“The contribution of Japan is felt in all parts of Kenya and across all socio-economic sectors. From education to technology, to development, Kenyans right across the country can claim to have benefited from the work of Japan’s government and its people,” President Kenyatta said.
President Kenyatta – who is accompanied by Cabinet Secretaries Amina Mohamed, Eng. Michael Kamau and Henry Rotich – said Japan is a model for Kenya, adding: “We seek to emulate your experience in economic development and in raising the standard of living of the Japanese people.”
The President appreciated Japan’s support to Kenya’s development agenda, especially financing of the Mombasa Port expansion project Phase I and Phase II.