• Kyodo

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The three mega-banks said they will expand their businesses in Africa, following Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s pledge over the weekend to bolster measures to boost investment in the resource-rich continent.

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., Mizuho Bank and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ are aiming to help Japanese companies tap into the market and support development of the corporate sector in Africa.

Sumitomo Mitsui said Monday it has agreed with the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank to offer loans of up to $80 million to the African bank, in tandem with the government-backed Japan Bank for International Cooperation.

The loan agreement is designed to encourage African firms to import machinery products from Japanese companies.

Sumitomo Mitsui has also signed a business partnership with the African Development Bank and Banco de Desenvolvimento de Angola.

Mizuho Bank said separately that it has agreed to form a business tie-up with six African financial institutions, including the Zambia Development Agency and the Development Bank of Southern Africa, with an eye to providing financial services know-how and promoting the banking sector in the region.

Meanwhile, BTMU said it has reached a business cooperation agreement with the Kenya Investment Authority. With Kenya seen as an economic hub in eastern Africa, the bank plans to receive information about new investment projects and provide it to Japanese firms.

At the Tokyo International Conference on African Development in the Kenyan capital Nairobi, which wrapped up Sunday, Abe said that Japan will mobilize a total of $30 billion in private — and public-sector funds to invest in Africa over three years.

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