Branch of a coffee bush in Kenya with blossoms and unripe fruit. Coffee is one of the country's main exports.

Kenya Partner with shared values and driver of economic growth

Kenya, an established democracy and driver of economic growth, is making key contributions to stability and development in East Africa. The country plays an active role in political processes both in the region and internationally, for example under the umbrella of the United Nations, the African Union and the East African Community.

Straight to
People on the streets of Nairobi, Kenya

Kenya plays an important role within the region in security policy terms, among other things as a provider of troops for peace missions and as a mediator, for example in the Tigray conflict and in Eastern Congo. More than 577,000 refugees and asylum seekers, most of them from neighbouring Somalia and South Sudan, were registered in Kenya as at January 2023.

Kenya's economy recovered quickly from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the country is vulnerable to the price shocks for consumables caused by Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine. There have been particularly sharp increases in the prices of imported fuel, fertiliser, wheat and other foods.

Kenya is strongly affected by the impacts of climate change. The Horn of Africa region is currently going through the longest and most severe drought on record. The food situation in Kenya has worsened dramatically. Some 5.4 million people, especially in the northern and north-western parts of the country, are threatened by hunger. At the same time, high levels of public debt, partly as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, are limiting the government's scope for action.

In the current Human Development Index (HDI), Kenya ranks 152nd out of the 191 countries listed.


German development cooperation with Kenya

Government negotiations with Kenya in December 2022 at the BMZ in Berlin
Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Kenyan Foreign Minister Alfred Mutua, Development State Secretary Jochen Flasbarth and Kenyan President William Ruto (from left) after signing a roadmap for a Climate and Development Partnership.

Germany is one of Kenya's biggest supporters. The two countries' cooperation is geared towards facilitating economic development, achieving sustainable poverty reduction, and reducing social inequalities.

In November 2022, Kenya and Germany entered into a Climate and Development Partnership in order to jointly boost Kenya's climate action efforts. One focus of the Partnership is on increasing the use of renewable energy. Kenya has adopted the ambitious goal of generating 100 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. A second focus is the improvement of food security through the adaptation of agricultural systems to climate change. There are also plans for using renewable energy to generate green hydrogen for fertiliser production in order to reduce Kenya's dependency on expensive fossil fertiliser (see also Core area “Climate and energy, just transition”).

At the government negotiations in December 2022, the German government committed 153 million euros in new funding for Kenya. This comprises 127 million euros in Financial Cooperation funding and 26 million euros in Technical Cooperation funding.

In addition, the BMZ is providing funding for Kenya under its special initiatives “Transformation of Agricultural and Food Systems” and “Displaced Persons and Host Countries”.

There are plans for the provision of additional funding within 2023 for the Climate and Development Partnership.

The two sides agreed to focus their cooperation on the following core areas:

  • Transformation of agricultural and food systems
  • Sustainable economic development, training and employment
  • Climate and energy, just transition

The next government negotiations with Kenya are planned for 2024.

Farmer at Mount Kenya

Core area “Transformation of agricultural and food systems” Increasing youth employment, enhancing productivity, improving the food situation Internal link

Agriculture is an important sector of Kenya's economy and accounts for the largest proportion of jobs. Yet recently food security in Kenya has seen a sharp decline. Germany is assisting its partner country in its efforts to increase productivity in the agricultural sector and to make agriculture more resilient to the impacts of climate change.

A student is testing solar panels on the roof of a training facility for solar technicians and energy auditors at Strathmore University, Nairobi.

Core area “Sustainable economic development, training and employment” Creating opportunities for young people Internal link

Young people need to have access to vocational education that will give them the knowledge and the skills that are in particularly high demand in the labour market. To that end, the players involved in relevant development cooperation programmes are working closely with the private sector and the Kenyan government.

View of the geothermal power station Olkaria in Kenya

Core area “Climate and energy, just transition” Expanding the energy supply Internal link

Kenya is a leader when it comes to expanding the use of renewable energy in Africa. It already generates about 90 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources (primarily geothermal power, hydropower and wind power). In November 2022, at the international climate conference in Sharm el-Sheikh (COP27), Kenya and Germany agreed to enter into a Climate and Development Partnership.

Refugees at a camp in Dadaab, northern Kenya

Other areas of cooperation Internal link

Germany and Kenya also work together in areas outside the agreed core areas. For example, the German government is helping Kenya to fight corruption and to provide services for refugees.

Current situation

View of Nairobi, the capital of Kenya
People on the streets of Nairobi, Kenya
An employee checks an assembly line on which tetrapacks of fruit juice are being conveyed.

As at: 02/05/2023