African Development Bank and United Nations University sign memorandum of understanding on sustainable development in Africa

UN University and AfDB officials

UN University and AfDB officials

TUNIS, Tunisia, June 19, 2013 Dr. Donald Kaberuka, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) (, and Prof. David Malone, Rector of United Nations University (UNU), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to foster research and knowledge exchange on sustainable development in Africa. The MOU was signed on June 5 after the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V), held in Yokohama, Japan, from June 1-3.

The AfDB-UNU partnership aims to strengthen collaboration between Japan and African countries to strengthen Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) in Africa. The AfDB and UNU will contribute to the establishment of a joint Africa–Asia strategic plan for sustainable development and a joint program of activities for capacity building in Africa. The two institutions aim to promote knowledge transfer through a consortium of universities.

The AfDB’s new strategy 2013-2022 ( and its upcoming human capital strategy ( support the creation of networks of knowledge to strengthen STI in Africa. Through this partnership the AfDB is helping to strengthen a consortium of universities and their respective science faculties specializing in sustainable development (see box 1).

AfDB President Kaberuka showed his interest in this consortium of universities during his visit to Japan and presence at TIVAD V. Along with Kazuhiko Takeuchi, UNU Vice Rector, President Kaberuka delivered the opening remarks at a side event on sustainable development at TICAD V on June 2, 2013 highlighting the importance of education and skills development. The side event on the role of higher education in Africa’s sustainable development was organized by the AfDB’s Human Development Department in collaboration with UNU, the University of Tokyo, and the Japan Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). Representatives from the consortium of universities exchanged their views on innovative ways to achieve sustainable development in Africa through higher education.

On June 5, President Kaberuka delivered a keynote speech at a seminar on Africa’s Transformation and Strategy for Growth at the University of Tokyo. In front of an audience of students, faculty, representatives of African Universities and African ambassadors, among others, President Kaberuka stressed the contribution of the AfDB to Africa’s structural transformation. Organized by the AfDB in collaboration with UNU and the University of Tokyo, the seminar provided a platform to discuss the economic transformation of Africa, and the challenges and opportunities for green and inclusive growth on the continent. The speech was followed by a Q& A session that allowed the President to engage with participants on a wide range of issues with respect to African development and to strengthening the Africa-Japan partnership (


Distributed by the African Press Organization on behalf of the African Development Bank (AfDB).


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