G20 Investment Summit: German Development Ministry expands reform partnerships

05.11.2018 - Article

On October 30, German Minister for Economic Cooperation, Gerd Müller launched negotiations with Ethiopia, Morocco and Senegal on reform partnerships, writes the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation.

German Minister for Economic Cooperation, Gerd Müller
German Minister for Economic Cooperation, Gerd Müller© dpa-Zentralbild

Gerd Müller announced the plans at the G20 Investment Summit in Berlin organised by the German-African Business Association and the Sub-Saharan Africa Initiative of German Business (SAFRI).

He said, “The reform partnerships illustrate the new focus of Germany's development cooperation. We concentrate on private investment, vocational education and employment, so as to make sure that Africa's young people have a future in Africa.

This requires efforts by the countries of Africa to improve the general environment: good governance, development of tax authorities and supreme audit institutions, legal certainty, anti-corruption and democracy. If governments wish to join the reform partnerships, they have to take action in all these fields.

Ethiopia, Morocco and Senegal have made progress in these areas, so that we are now able to start negotiations with them on specific reform objectives within the framework of the partnerships. Once the negotiations have been concluded, we will commit further funding in support of these objectives. What is new about the reform partnerships is that the funding will only be disbursed after the reform steps have been implemented.”

Through the reform partnerships, the German government fills the Marshall Plan with Africa and the G20 “Compact with Africa” initiative with life. The German Ministry for Economic Cooperation (BMZ) supports particularly reform-minded countries in improving the environment for private-sector involvement so as to create more jobs. Countries chosen for reform partnerships are characterised, in particular, by good governance, compliance with human rights standards and efforts to promote private-sector development.

In June 2017, the BMZ entered into the first three reform partnerships with Tunisia, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire, committing itself to provide increased support to the three countries. In their turn, they have committed themselves to specific milestones in the area of the rule of law and in key areas for private-sector development. For example, Tunisia has reformed and expanded its anti-corruption authority, enabling it to investigate more cases.

Wind energy laboratory in Ethiopia
Wind energy laboratory in Ethiopia© Thomas Köhler/photothek.net

It has also reformed the government credit guarantee fund in order to make it possible for banks to provide finance for small and medium-sized enterprises and for start-ups. If the country continues to implement the reforms that have been agreed, Germany will likely be able to disburse the first 100 million Euro at the end of this year.

In Ghana, the reform partnership focuses on the energy sector. The share of renewable energy is to be brought from less than one percent to ten percent. To that end, Ghana is undertaking various efforts, including the revision of its renewable energy act by the end of this year. If it implements this and other reforms, Germany will provide 100 million Euro in support of the energy sector.


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