New economic partnership with Africa

Gerd Müller and Brigitte Zypries in Nairobi New economic partnership with Africa

"Technical and vocational education and training is the key to more investment and more jobs in Africa," said Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller at the German-African Business Summit in Nairobi.

He is there to launch a vocational training initiative that is to offer initial and advanced training to up to 5,000 young people over the next five years.

At the German-African Business Summit in the Kenyan capital, some 400 representatives of African and German businesses and associations, and politicians will be providing impetus for more investment in Africa. Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller and Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Brigitte Zypries will be discussing investment and vocational training with them.

German-Kenyan vocational training initiative

"Businesses that invest in Africa need well trained skilled workers. Africa’s young people need training and prospects of a better future," sums up Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller and pledges, "We will bring these two sides together and thus stimulate investment in Africa." The German-Kenyan vocational training initiative focuses on practice-oriented training in trades and crafts, and in technical occupations.

Kenya is Germany’s main trading partner in East Africa, with trade worth 533 million euros. Over the last ten years, the Kenyan economy has grown by more than five per cent a year on average. This year, growth is even expected to top six per cent. For this, Kenya needs more and better qualified skilled workers. Yet the country is suffering a high rate of youth unemployment. Every year almost one million more young people flood onto the country’s labour market.

Discussing a Marshall Plan with Africa

Economic investment and vocational training are part of a Marshall Plan with Africa, which Gerd Müller will be discussing at the summit.

There are also plans to step up development cooperation in future with those partners who have realised reforms in the fields of good governance, human rights and economic development. The risks faced by investors who take the step toward Africa are to be minimised, and reciprocal trade fostered.

Gerd Müller calls for more investment

Bilateral trade with sub-Saharan African states has recently been just below 26 billion euros per annum – that is equivalent to Germany’s trade with Slovakia. German direct investment in sub-Saharan Africa, at around seven billion euros, accounts for less than one per cent of German direct investment worldwide.

"We need economic cooperation with an entirely new dimension," declared Federal Development Minister Gerd Müller. He called for more investment rather than public funding. If processing and thus value added remain in African countries, million of jobs could be created, he pointed out. Germany’s development cooperation should provide support in the form of advisory services and technical expertise.

G20 focus: Africa

Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Brigitte Zypries is attending the event in Nairobi with a business delegation. "The German government has made Africa and sustainable, inclusive growth a priority topic for the German G20 Presidency. The region of opportunities, Africa, which should be home to two billion people by 2050, is a market that is just developing its full potential. The need for investment is huge. German expertise is very much in demand, and German businesses are willing to invest in young people in Africa and to foster the transfer of technological knowledge," declared the Minister, with a view to the summit.

The German-African Business Summit is taking place on 9 and 10 February 2017 in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi. It is being organised by the