Although Africa is considered the “continent of opportunity”, German companies are relatively underrepresented in African countries compared to their European counterparts. The Corona pandemic of recent years has not improved the situation. Foreign trade with Africa still only accounts for 1.7% of Germany’s total foreign trade; the share of direct investments in Africa is even just under one percent of all German direct investments abroad. Reasons for the low level of engagement of German companies include a low level of knowledge about the continent. Sound knowledge of economic policy contexts is essential for a deeper economic partnership between Germany and Africa.
For this reason, the “Economic Cluster for Research on Africa” (WCA) of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW) in cooperation with the ESB Business School of Reutlingen University was launched, which aims to establish an independent, highly visible economic research on Africa in Germany in the medium term. The economic relevance of the continent is thus to be brought more into the public focus in order to tap the potential for more investment and trade and thus contribute to the economic development of the continent.
Initial findings of the cluster show not only which factors contribute to the increase in trade with and foreign investment in Africa, but also what impact the current Ukraine war will have on trade and foreign investment in Africa. These findings as well as other questions on the role of economic research in deepening German-African trade and investment relations are the focus of the discussion to which you are cordially invited by the German Africa Foundation, the Kiel Institute for the World Economy and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action.
Dr. Uschi Eid, President of the German Africa Foundation
Dr. Franziska Brantner MP, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Short
Prof. Dr. Tobias Heidland, Head of Research Center „International Development“, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (ifW)
Dr. Franziska Brantner MP, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action
H.E. Mmasekgoa Masire-Mwamba, Ambassador of the Republic of Botswana in Germany
Prof. Dr. Rainer Thiele, Director „Kiel Institute Africa Initiative“, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW)
Timon Herzog, CEO Grips Energy GmbH
Sabine Odhiambo, Secretary General, German Africa Foundation