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The Tokyo International Conference on African Development is a great opportunity for Japan to expand its business in Africa, as the resource-rich continent begins to shed its dependence on aid to emerge as an attractive consumer market and a swelling population, according to the Foreign Ministry’s ambassador for TICAD V, Makoto Ito.

“The population is expected to grow in Africa, especially among the young, the working population. The continent is also rich in resources, and its economy is developing,” Ito told The Japan Times in a recent interview. “That growth will continue. It needs to be continued for the sake of Africa as well as the world economy.”

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