On 27 August 2021 the Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo travelled to Berlin to attend the Compact with Africa Summit with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. In this context, the German Africa Foundation invited members of the German Bundestag as well as representatives from ministries and the business community to a working breakfast with the Ghanaian President and his delegation. The aim was to exchange views on the domestic political situation in Ghana, the prospects for European-African relations, the geopolitical situation and the fight against Corona in Africa.
A central point of the discussion was how to handle the Covid 19 pandemic and the distribution of vaccines in Africa. Ghana had responded quickly and effectively to the outbreak of the Corona pandemic last year, yet the pandemic also revealed a lack of infrastructure in the health sector, he said. Therefore, the government is investing massively in the construction of hospitals. President Akufo-Addo also addressed the problem of vaccine distribution and local vaccine production. The pandemic has once again shown how important international cooperation is, as he stressed. Nevertheless, there is still room for improvement, especially with regard to vaccine deliveries to Africa. Therefore, Ghana is working intensively on the establishment of a vaccine research centre in order to be better prepared for future pandemics. However, until the structures for the production of vaccines are fully established, the expansion of vaccine supplies to Africa is crucial in order to be able to take joint action against the pandemic.
For this, but also for other areas of cooperation between African countries and the EU, a clearly defined framework is essential. The entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is an important step for the African continent. He hoped that the EU would continue to support this important project.
In addition, the President expressed the wish to give African regional organisations such as ECOWAS a stronger weight on the international stage. He addressed security policy in the Sahel and stressed that he would like to see more confidence in existing, well-trained regional troops as well as local and regional approaches to security policy. However, the presence of UN troops in Mali was the right thing to do and should be maintained.
The President also emphasised the close connection between the European and African continents, which should be continued and expanded against the background of the current geopolitical situation. From the African point of view, it would be desirable to establish a framework for future cooperation between Africa and Europe, which would take into account the self-imposed development goals of African states and move away from classical development aid. The Compact with Africa is a step in this direction. Ghana hopes that this cooperation will continue following the election of a new German government.