Cooperation with African countries
Agriculture is a key sector in many African countries and therefore is of strategic importance for sustainable development.
Africa's farm sector employs around two thirds of the total population and has great potential for development. In some African countries, the upward trend that can be fuelled by the agricultural sector is already clearly discernible today. In others, the sector still falls far short of its potential, mainly due to structural obstacles. Hunger and poverty remain the central challenges on the African continent. Africa's natural resources are threatened by over-exploitation and degradation in many places and the continent is particularly affected by the adverse effects of climate change.
The goals of the BMEL's cooperation with African countries and its exchange with the African Union (AU) are above all to ensure food security for Africa's rapidly growing population and support for the development of a productive, entrepreneurial, modern and sustainable agri-food and forestry sector as a motor for economic growth and employment. To this effect, the BMEL invests in creating suitable conditions and funds training and demonstration projects. The BMEL and its institutions also promote and maintain intensive research cooperation and practice-oriented knowledge sharing with African partner institutions, which includes, inter alia, food safety, animal and plant health.
In recent years, the BMEL has made cooperation with Africa a priority of its international engagement. With our active engagement we want to contribute to fleshing out the German government's updated Africa policy guidelines and to playing our part in implementing the recommendations of the European Union's (EU's) Task Force Rural Africa and the decisions of the EU-AU Agriculture Ministers.
Germany closely cooperates with Ethiopia, Côte d'Ivoire, Kenya, Morocco, Zambia and South Africa.