Three weeks before the G20 summit in Hamburg, Africa was, for the first time, high on the G20 agenda. Nine African heads of government, numerous ministers, and the heads of the World Bank, the Internationale Monetary Fund and the African De­vel­op­ment Bank gathered with Federal Chancellor An­gela Merkel, Minister of Finance Wolfgang Schäuble and De­vel­op­ment Minister Gerd Müller in Berlin to discuss issues of central importance for the Continent’s future and talk about forging a new partnership between the 20 most important industrialized and emerging countries and Africa.

The “Com­pact with Africa” Initiative is a core element of that partnership, alongside concrete de­vel­op­ment initiatives to promote rural youth employment and digital educationist for girls. The Compact is aimed at building investment partnerships with reform-minded African countries, with a view to im­prov­ing the climate for private investment and thus creating better employment prospects. Three Compact countries will additionally enter into a reform partnership with Germany: on the margins of the conference, De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Müller signed declarations of in­tent with Tunisia, Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. Sene­gal, Rwanda, Morocco and Egypt will also be part of the Compact.

Gerd Müller explained: “Africa needs jobs for its young gen­er­a­tion. And for these jobs, we need more pri­vate in­vest­ments. In our co­op­er­a­tion, we will put a stronger fo­cus on re­form cham­pi­ons in the fu­ture. Those who suc­cess­fully fight cor­rup­tion and ac­tively pro­mote the re­spect for hu­man rights and le­gal cer­tainty will re­ceive more sup­port.”

The sec­ond day of the con­fer­ence fea­tured work­shops on the top­ics of cli­mate and en­ergy, dig­i­tal ed­u­ca­tion and de­vel­op­ment. More­over, the Acad­emy for Tax and Fi­nan­cial Crime In­ves­ti­ga­tion was launched dur­ing the Africa Op­por­tu­ni­ties Fo­rum. The Acad­emy, which is also sup­ported by the BMZ, will pro­vide fur­ther train­ing for African tax of­fi­cials, en­abling them to com­bat tax fraud more ef­fec­tively in the fu­ture. There were also some in­ter­ac­tive dis­cus­sions and ex­changes on the is­sues of trade, fis­cal re­spon­si­bil­ity, re­mit­tances and em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties, and an ex­change of ex­pe­ri­ences with young African en­tre­pre­neurs (africaX­changer).

Source: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development