Wednesday

20th Feb 2019

Germany details its 'Marshall Plan' for Africa

  • Germany is set to make Africa a key part of its G20 presidency (Photo: bundeskanzlerei.de)

Germany has unveiled a plan for Africa that aims to increase trade and development as part of a larger effort to curb migrant flows to Europe.

A 33-page blueprint, presented on Wednesday (18 January) in Berlin by Germany's development minister Gerd Muller, covers areas from energy to tax evasion and market access.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

Muller said on his website that a "whole new dimension of cooperation with Africa" was needed and that Germany was ready to support governments in Africa in the endeavour.

"Anyone who fights corruption, builds tax systems, invests in education and relies on gender equality can expect more support from us," he said.

He said fast-growing economies in Africa presented a host of opportunities for German businesses.

German media report development funds will increase by another 20 percent for countries that undertake the reforms.

Dubbed the Marshall Plan, in reference to US aid to Western Europe following WWII, the proposal is likely to become a major feature of Germany's G20 presidency this year.

But critics say the blueprint fails to explain how the plan would be tailored to the 54 separate countries on the African continent.

"Unfortunately the Marshall plan remains unspecific on how the concrete measures and instruments will look like," Christoph Kannengiesser, managing director of the Afrika Verein, told Deutsche Welle news website.

The EU launched similar schemes known as migration compacts last summer with Mali, Nigeria, Niger, Senegal, and Ethiopia, as part of its new "migration partnership framework".

The EU's effort also aims to slow irregular migrant flows into Europe by looking at the political, social, and economic dimensions of development.

But a progress report issued in December noted major hurdles in terms of linking the compacts with policies on legal migration, trade, energy, agriculture, and education.

Last September, the European Commission had also announced an investment plan for Africa and is hoping to shore up some €88 billion from EU states.

The flurry of recent EU plans can be traced back to the Valletta summit on migration in late 2015. The summit was called in reaction to a large inflow of migrants seeking refuge in the EU.

African heads of governments and states gathered at the event, alongside their European counterparts.

The two sides issued a joint statement on deepening cooperation but differences on readmission of rejected migrants and creating more legal channels for migrants to arrive in Europe remain entrenched. The EU commission had also launched a €1.8 billion trust fund to support the measures.

A follow-up of what has evolved from the 2015 Valletta migration summit is set for early February in Malta.

Investigation

The discreet banker of Africa development

The European Investment Bank has grown, largely unnoticed, into the world's largest lender and borrower, but who is really in charge is anyone's guess.

Opinion

The Lake Chad Basin crisis

With no end in sight to the "tragedy", humanitarian agencies must call for international political and security engagement, the UN's head of migration says.

Opinion

Africa is our destiny

U2's Bono writes that Africa should be at the centre of political leader's thoughts at the latest G20 foreign minister's summit and the Munich security conference this coming week.

News in Brief

  1. British PM to batter against EU wall on Brexit
  2. Hungary and Slovakia break EU line on Jerusalem
  3. Germany and France to overhaul EU competition law
  4. Estonia kicks out Danske Bank over money laundering scandal
  5. May and Juncker meet over Brexit on Wednesday
  6. EU promises to open up advisory groups
  7. EU agrees to limit CO2 emissions by trucks
  8. Juncker under attack in Hungary government ad

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersMilestone for Nordic-Baltic e-ID
  2. Counter BalanceEU bank urged to free itself from fossil fuels and take climate leadership
  3. Intercultural Dialogue PlatformRoundtable: Muslim Heresy and the Politics of Human Rights, Dr. Matthew J. Nelson
  4. Platform for Peace and JusticeTurkey suffering from the lack of the rule of law
  5. UNESDASoft Drinks Europe welcomes Tim Brett as its new president
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers take the lead in combatting climate change
  7. Counter BalanceEuropean Parliament takes incoherent steps on climate in future EU investments
  8. International Partnership For Human RightsKyrgyz authorities have to immediately release human rights defender Azimjon Askarov
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersSeminar on disability and user involvement
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersInternational appetite for Nordic food policies
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Nordic Innovation House in Hong Kong
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region has chance to become world leader when it comes to start-ups

Latest News

  1. 'No evidence' ECB bond-buying helped euro economy
  2. Juncker: Orban should leave Europe's centre-right
  3. College of Europe alumni ask rector to cut Saudi ties
  4. EU says Hungary's anti-Juncker campaign is fake news
  5. Trump right for once: Europe should take back foreign fighters
  6. EU should clarify rules for plant burgers and lab meat
  7. Italian populists could be second biggest force in EU parliament
  8. Merkel defends Russia ties, ridicules Trump on cars

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us