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(From R to L) Hon. Hideaki Omura, Governor- Aichi Prefectural Government; Amb. S.K. Maina Ambassador Kenya Embassy to Japan; Mr. Jun Karube, Honorary Consul of Kenya in Nagoya & President Toyota Tsusho Corporation during the Kenya-Aichi Seminar in Nagoya

On 17th May, 2016, the Kenya Embassy in Japan convened the Kenya-Japan, Small & Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) Seminar at the JICA Chubu Hall-Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, as a pre-event to the forthcoming TICAD VI Summit to be held from 27th – 28th August, 2016 in Nairobi. The Seminar was organized in collaboration with the Kenya Honorary Consulate in Nagoya; Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA); Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO); Kenyans in Japan Association (KIJA); with the support of: Aichi Prefectural Governement; African Development Bank (AfDB) Tokyo Office; and, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) ITPO Tokyo.

The forum which attracted more than 130 participants brought together prospective investors from Japan; Japanese investors with experience in Kenya; the SMEs in Japan especially from Aichi Prefecture; Kenyan Diaspora community in Japan; and, key industry stakeholders from the Government of Kenya and Japan. The Seminar was graced by Hon. Hideaki Omura, Governor, Aichi Prefectural Government; Mr. Jun Karube – Honorary Consul of Kenya in Nagoya, & President -Toyota Tsusho Corporation, and, Mr. Atsuhiko Hatano Director General, Chubu Bureau of Economy, Trade and Industry; Amongst the invited keynote speakers from Kenya included: Amb. Benson H.O Ogutu-Special Envoy for TICAD & Director General for TICAD VI Secretariat; Amb. Dennis Awori- Chairman Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA); and, Mr. Kiprono Kittony- Chairman, Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI).

The aim of the forum was two-fold: Promote Kenya as an ideal investment destination for Japanese SMEs, while, mobilizing the private Sector’s particularly SMEs’ participation in the forthcoming TICAD Summit in Nairobi. The seminar was therefore an excellent precursor to prepare the participants for the Summit, and, intensify the engagement between Kenya-Japan business communities.