Pre TICAD Workshop on Kaizen & the TICAD Process Held in Nairobi
July 1, 2016
Delivering opening remarks on behalf of H.E Toshitsugu Uesawa, the Japanese Ambassador to Kenya, Mr. Yasunori Nakamura, Director of Japan Information and Culture Centre stated that TICAD V in 2013 discussed and agreed that human capacity development in industry and business was one of the areas that needed to be worked on in Africa. KAIZEN, a Japanese philosophy that focuses on continuous improvement, should be a part of it. He emphasized that this was one of the contributors that enabled ‘Made in Japan’, which was famous for its low quality after the World War II, to achieve today’s status.
Dr. Chris Kiptoo, Principal Secretary, State Department of Trade, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives noted that Kenya is honoured to host the first TICAD summit in Africa. He remarked that KAIZEN will improve productivity, thus it also increases inter-regional trade and exports. He lauded JICA for its technical cooperation to Kenya Institute of Business Training on Kaizen. He also pointed out that Japan’s assistance to Kenya has been appreciated by the Kenyan people. Mombasa Port development is one such example.
The workshop had two presentations. The first presentation was by guest lecturer Professor Tetsushi Sonobe, Vice President of National Graduate School for Policy Studies. By using a case study from Thailand, he emphasized that knowing KAIZEN would be the first step to receive more investment from Japan. TICAD VI will be a good opportunity for the Kenyan private sector to have a partnership with the Japanese private sector. “I do hope the Kenyan private sector will take this chance to learn many important things including KAIZEN from the Japanese private sector,” Mr. Sonobe concluded. Mr. Sachio Yotsukura, Managing Director of Toyota Kenya, then followed to present on KAIZEN in Toyota Kenya.
The workshop was attended by Dr. Chris Kiptoo, Principal Secretary, State Department of Trade, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives; KEPSA Chairman Ambassador Dennis Awori, Mr. Nakamura Yasunori, Director, Japan Information & Culture Centre, Professor Tetsushi Sonobe and Mr. Sachio Yotsukura, Managing Director, Toyota Kenya; members of the Japan Embassy, JICA, Kenya Private Sector Alliance and other development stakeholders.