Partnership with Africa

Germany's Africa policy

Africa is a continent of political and economic opportunities. The German government has recognised the importance and the potential of our neighbouring continent and is aiming to achieve a more in-depth partnership. Here is an overview of Germany’s Africa policy.

Inside the greenhouse, where he grows vegetables, a  young African consults a tablet.

Apps for agriculture - Africa is fast becoming a well networked information society

Photo: Getty Images/Henk Badenhorst

The overarching goal of the partnership with Africa is to step up foreign- and security-policy relations, and a rules-based order. Germany’s Africa policy is based on the German government’s policy guidelines for Africa. 

Peace and security in Africa

Peace and security are important preconditions for ensuring that development can take place. That is why the German government is working to promote peace and security – with conflict prevention, peacekeeping and mediation measures.

Another goal of Germany’s Africa policy is to manage migration and address the root causes of displacement. To this end Germany has entered into migration partnerships with individual African states. Germany is working with these countries to promote training, employment and economic development especially for young people, and to mitigate the factors that cause people to migrate in the first place.

Investment in sustainable development

In addition, Germany would like to strengthen sustainable economic development within the scope of the partnership. To enhance the conditions for private investment on the African continent and launch infrastructure projects locally, the German government has entered into reform partnerships, or "Compacts with Africa", with some African states. In Ghana, for instance, the percentage of risk shouldered by companies themselves under official German Hermes export guarantees covering investments in the public sector was reduced from 10 per cent to 5 per cent. In Nigeria Germany is supporting the reform of the financial sector and promoting the extension of financial services for small and medium companies.

Civil society partnerships with Africa are also to be stepped up.

Strategic Partnership "Digital Africa"

One special focus of Germany’s Africa policy is digitalising Africa. To this end the German government launched the Strategic Partnership "Digital Africa".  The network specifically supports contacts between European businesses and development cooperation organisations.

Major companies including SAP, DHL and Siemens, but also small and medium enterprises work with German development cooperation experts to identify digital solutions to local problems. Since 2015 about 20 products have emerged in a number of sectors, including mobile climate insurance, digital tax returns in Zambia, an e-commerce platform in Rwanda and the digitalisation of value chains in agriculture in Uganda.

The Strategic Partnership "Digital Africa" was launched by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in 2015. Since then, more than 150 companies have joined the network. With these companies, the network elaborates suitable concepts, brings actors and local contacts together, and helps the organisations finance their projects.