Diplomatic relations between the Republic of Benin and Japan were established in 1961 and had been strengthened since 1979. These relations
are part of the traditional bilateral cooperation, through the various programs executed by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Japan’s New Assistance Policy in Benin adopted in 2017 now provides the implementation of infrastructure projects to support the Government’s
efforts to implement its 2016-2021 Action Programme (PAG).
Benin opened its Embassy in Japan in November 2002. In March 2005, Japan began a Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers, (JOCV) office in
Benin which became a JICA Bureau in April 2007. The opening of the Embassy of Japan to Benin took place in January 2010.
Bilateral relations between Benin and Japan are also marked by the existence of Benin-Japan Friendship Parliamentary Groups in both countries.
It should be mentioned that there is a beginning of military cooperation also between the two countries. Indeed, since 2016, Japan has started by inviting Benin to the International Conference of Cadets that it organizes each year.
Decentralized cooperation is also being implemented between the two countries with the twinning of the city of Cotonou to the port city of
Yokohama since November 2013. As part of the preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, the cities of Yokohama and Satte are designated as host cities for the Beninese Olympic team.
In 2018 the bilateral cooperation between the two countries was also marked by several exchanges of delegations including:
• the mission of a delegation of three (03) Japanese Parliamentarians to Benin, led by Honorable Kiyoshi EJIMA, member of the Upper House
of the Japanese Parliament, from 13 to 15 January 2018; and
• the working visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, H. E Mr. Aurélien AGBENONCI, accompanied by the Minister of Economy
and Finance, Mr. Romuald WADAGNI, and his Technical Advisor, Mrs. Nelly AHOUILIHOUA, to Japan, from June 18th to 21st, 2018, at the invitation of his Japanese counterpart, His Excellency Mr. Taro KONO.
At the multilateral level, Benin-Japanese cooperation is also part of the implementation of the Action Plans of the Tokyo International Conference
for the Development of Africa (TICAD). Since its creation in 1993, Benin has always participated at the highest level, in the different editions of
TICAD, the last of which was held for the first time in Africa in Nairobi, Kenya, in August 2016. The next edition (TICAD VII) will be held in
Yokohama in 2019.