Angela said goodbye

With the "Compact with Africa" initiative, Merkel intended to build economic ties. How successful was that?
The conference is officially called "Compact with Africa". But when German Chancellor Angela Merkel meets with a dozen African statesmen this Friday afternoon, some of whom will join via video link, one era is actually coming to an end. It is an era in which Africa has played a slightly bigger role in German politics than before.
The visible signs of this are the following: the "Compact with Africa" ​​initiative is a prestigious project of the German G20 presidency. Private investment was to flow to Africa on a whole new level. The German government wanted to encourage German companies, above all, through a series of support measures for Africa.
At the summit in Berlin, the balance of that initiative will be realized, and it is, from the German point of view, positive. "Yes, there are currently several active German companies in Africa, above all medium-sized ones. Significant growth was achieved in 2018 and 2019, i.e. before the pandemic," Christoph Kanengiser, general director of the African Association of the German Economy, told DW.
The heads of African states will probably send friendly words for farewell. However, there is not much left of the enthusiasm for "Merkel's Plan" - as Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara called it in early 2017.
"When I look at African countries today and compare it to the time when Chancellor Merkel announced it, I'm no longer sure that German economic activity has increased significantly," said Olumide Abimbola, director of the African think tank APRI in Berlin.


In a sense, both are true. From 2017 to 2019, German investments in Africa increased...

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