German development agency GIZ is committed to improving the living conditions of millions of women, men and children across the globe. ʻFor people to have a good quality of life in their home countries, they need education for their children, training opportunities for young people and an income with which to feed themselves and their families. On behalf of the German Government, we are committed to promoting development and employment,’ said Tanja Gönner, Chair of the GIZ Management Board, at the company’s annual press conference. ʻBecause employment shapes futures.’ The growing importance of international cooperation is also reflected in GIZ’s business figures: in 2017, the company’s business volume increased by almost seven per cent to around EUR 2.6 billion. Commissions were received from the German Government, the European Union (EU) and other national governments. The main commissioning party was the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
GIZ’s work has a focus on Africa. ʻThe German Government is investing in targeted measures to improve people’s prospects in their home countries, with the emphasis on education, training and employment. Having a secure income enables people to stay in their country,’ said Martin Jäger, State Secretary in BMZ and Chair of the GIZ Supervisory Board. ʻBMZ counts on GIZ, as a reliable partner with extensive experience in many African countries, to carry out our work.’ One way that GIZ is striving to create more and better jobs in North Africa and the Middle East is through a BMZ special initiative. In the last three years, GIZ has boosted job prospects for more than 100,000 people and improved the lives of entire families. GIZ’s work benefits more than 450,000 people in total.
GIZ’s work focuses on three main themes: displacement and migration, security and stability, and climate and energy. A third of GIZ’s projects are related to climate change. Since late 2017, GIZ has also been working on behalf of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), which was established by 194 countries to provide funding for climate projects in developing countries. GIZ’s first project for GCF is designed to make the supply of drinking water in the tri-island state of Grenada more resilient to the effects of climate change, and this is set to benefit more than 100,000 people.
In 2017, the volume of work commissioned by BMZ increased by 11 per cent, to around EUR 2.1 billion. This figure includes additional funds provided in the form of cofinancing by third parties such as the EU, foreign governments and foundations. The combined volume of the EU’s cofinancing contributions and direct commissions made it GIZ’s second largest commissioning party, with funds totalling around EUR 290 million, a rise of roughly 24 per cent. At the end of 2017, GIZ had 19,506 staff in 120 countries, an increase of 1,246 compared to 2016. Almost 70 per cent of staff were from the countries in which the company works.