Rural development

Creating new prospects for people living in rural areas

Harvesting apricots in Tunisia

Hunger and poverty are two important reasons why people leave their rural homes. Cities hold the promise of educational opportunities, work, higher wages and better medical care. These factors, as well as the overexploitation of natural resources, a shortage of land, natural disasters and the consequences of climate change, can all induce people to migrate to the cities.

Making rural regions liveable

Successful farms (or associations of farms) that are integrated into the market can boost entire regions. They form the basis for employment opportunities in the agricultural sector and beyond – for example with jobs in agricultural processing, crafts and trades, transport and retailing.

However, if people living in rural areas are to be encouraged to stay where they are, then even more will need to be done. Rural areas must also become more attractive through better infrastructure and services in areas such as water, energy, mobility, communication, health and education.

Comprehensive support for rural transformation processes

Through its special initiative ONE WORLD– No Hunger, Germany is assisting partner countries around the world in creating development opportunities for the agricultural sector and for rural areas. The idea is to pave the way for rural transformation to happen in a socially compatible and environmentally sustainable manner.

That is the reasoning behind the activities carried out by the BMZ so as to support sustainable agricultural policies and rural economic development, promote investment in rural areas, foster the development of decentralised institutions, and get public and private sector players and civil society involved. The main purpose of these efforts is to make agriculture more productive and to help create jobs within and outside the agricultural sector.

The Berlin Charter: an overall concept for rural development

Handing over of the "Berlin Charter" to the German Minister for Development, Gerd Müller, at the G20 conference "ONE World No Hunger. Future of the Rural World”

The "Berlin Charter" portrays challenges and potential solutions to create prospects for people living in rural areas, especially for youth.

The document was elaborated by an independent international advisory committee. Civil society, private sector and development experts contributed to the charter in various fora and via a broad public online-consultation. With the intensive participation of committed young people from all over Africa, Asia and Germany, the charter gives a voice to the young generation from the rural world.

During the G20 conference "ONE World No Hunger. Future of the Rural World" on 27 April 2017 in Berlin, the Charter was discussed by hundreds of participants. It was confirmed by acclamation of the conference and handed over to Germany’s Federal Minister Dr. Gerd Müller. He assured the ministry’s commitment for its implementation.

With its call for action to create prosperous rural areas together with the young generation, the Berlin Charter provides an important political impetus for the German and international development cooperation.

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