Japan, Angola strike basic accord on investment treaty

Mainichi Japan | February 22, 2011

Japan, Angola strike basic accord on investment treaty

TOKYO (Kyodo) — Japan and Angola struck a basic agreement Monday on a bilateral investment treaty, which is designed to facilitate Japanese firms’ foray into the resource-rich African country that is seeing rapid economic growth following the end of a civil war in 2002.

Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara and his Angolan counterpart Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti endorsed the broad accord and agreed to work toward an early conclusion of bilateral negotiations. Angola will be the first sub-Saharan African country to seal an investment pact with Japan, Japanese officials said.

Japanese companies such as Toyota Motor Corp., construction machinery maker Komatsu Ltd., trading house Sojitz Corp. and Sumitomo Corp. have dispatched employees to Angola, which is rich in resources including oil, diamonds and rare earth minerals.

The officials said Japan is eager to strengthen its economic ties with Angola, which now serves as a major oil provider to China.

Following a meeting with the Angolan foreign minister, Maehara also signed documents on Japanese grant aid worth 383 million yen for vaccination against polio through the U.N. Children’s Fund.

The aid will be used to immunize some 5.76 million children under 5 years old in 2011 in Angola, where an epidemic has continued since 2005, the officials said.