Ghana Anchor for stability in West Africa
Democracy is fairly well established in Ghana and the country is an important anchor for stability in West Africa. For many decades now Ghana has been successfully pursuing a good neighbours policy and pushing for more regional integration.
Ghana’s economy is heavily dependent on export earnings from just a few commodities, such as gold, crude oil and cocoa. The fluctuating world market prices for these commodities have a considerable impact on the country’s economic situation.
In 2010, Ghana achieved the leap to become a lower-middle-income country. However, there are very big differences between the level of development in the economically strong coastal region and the level of development in the North of the country. Ghana was remarkably successful in terms of reaching the targets to be achieved by 2015 for the Millennium Development Goals. Ghana was the first sub-Saharan African country to succeed in halving poverty compared with figures for 1990.
The priority areas of development cooperation between Germany and Ghana are decentralisation, promoting agriculture and sustainable economic development.
Germany and Ghana signed a reform partnership in the field of renewable energies in December 2017. Furthermore, Germany is also supporting proper, environmentally sound recycling of electronic waste.
German development cooperation with Ghana
Germany is one of Ghana’s most important development partners. The aim of German-Ghanaian development cooperation is to promote viable, pro-poor, inclusive economic growth and thus bolster Ghana’s status as a middle-income country.
During government negotiations in October 2018, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) committed new funds totalling 86.5 million euros to Ghana for bilateral development cooperation in 2018 and 2019.
The priority areas of cooperation are:
- Governance (decentralisation and improving public finances)
- Sustainable economic development (including vocational training)
Under the framework of a reform partnership Germany is assisting Ghana in promoting renewable energies and energy efficiency. Cooperation with regard to waste management has also been agreed. The focus of this cooperation is on how to handle electronic waste.
Reform partnership Securing a sustainable energy supply
Energy demand is constantly rising in Ghana, but the country’s power supply is already inadequate and unreliable. The main problems are power lost during transmission and distribution, inadequate cost recovery by energy suppliers and the dependence on fossil fuels.
In order to increase the country’s energy security, Germany and Ghana launched a reform partnership for renewable energies in December 2017. This partnership is part of the Marshall Plan with Africa set out by Development Minister Gerd Müller and is Germany’s contribution to the G20 Compact with Africa initiative.
The advisory services that Germany is providing centre around devising a new forward-looking law on giving priority to renewable energy sources. The aim is that, by 2020, ten per cent of all energy consumption in Ghana will be met using renewable energy sources. With this aim in mind, Germany is supporting the use of solar energy and the construction of overhead transmission lines between Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, for example. At the same time, training programmes in the energy sector are aimed at creating new prospects for work in Ghana.