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East Africa

Tackling the root causes of displacement

Günter Nooke, Africa Personal Representative, travels to Uganda


Street scene in Kampala, Uganda

Press release of 22.09.2015 |

Kampala/Berlin – Günter Nooke, the German Chancellor’s Personal Representative for Africa and Director for Africa at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), will arrive in Uganda today for the start of a four-day visit. While there, he will have meetings with the Ugandan prime minister and with Uganda’s finance minister to discuss issues around migration and climate change.

"We need to step up our cooperation with African partners in these areas,” Nooke said prior to his departure. "The only way we can tackle the root causes of displacement and curb climate change is if all sides shoulder some of the responsibility.” Besides bilateral development cooperation, the forthcoming EU conference on migration and displacement in La Valetta in November and the UN climate conference in Paris will feature high on the agenda of the talks.

While he is in the country, Günter Nooke will also meet representatives of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Uganda. The number of people seeking refuge in Uganda is rising as a result of the continuing conflicts in South Sudan and Burundi. "The government and the UNHCR are beginning to reach the limits of their capacities. We want to see if it is possible for us to support the valuable work being done by the Ugandan government and the UNHCR in Uganda through our special initiative 'Tackling the root causes of displacement, reintegrating refugees'," Nooke said.

On Wednesday, Günter Nooke will give the keynote speech at the official launch of the Small and Growing Business Fund, GroFin. GroFin is being funded by Germany and other donor countries. The small and growing businesses supported by the fund are given loans or, to a lesser extent, start-up capital and they receive strategic advice. The intention is that additional, long-term, high-quality jobs will thus be created in selected African countries.

Also on the programme for the visit to Uganda are a coffee farm and various German development projects. On Friday Nooke will have a meeting with representatives from the Ugandan start-up scene. He will be accompanied on the visit by a business delegation. In Uganda, German companies are engaged in agricultural production and in infrastructure activities in particular.

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