Government negotiations Germany supports Bangladesh in adapting to climate change

Press release 9 December 2022 | In future, Germany will scale up support for Bangladesh to help the country cope with the impacts of climate change. This was agreed by the two countries at the government negotiations that ended yesterday in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh. The focus of this cooperation is on protection against floods and support for people forced to leave their homes because of devastating floods. Around 157 million euros will be provided for this purpose. Overall, the German Development Ministry (BMZ) has committed 191 million euros in fresh funding to Bangladesh.

People cross a river in Bangladesh via a narrow footbridge and by boat.

Development Minister Svenja Schulze said: “Bangladesh is affected by climate change more than almost any other country in the world, and is also the most densely populated low-lying country. Floods are destroying entire livelihoods. Bangladesh needs international solidarity in order to cope with the dramatic consequences of climate change. Germany will do even more in the future to meet this responsibility.”

The impacts of climate change in Bangladesh are dramatic. It is the most densely populated low-lying country in the world, with large areas lying only a few metres above sea level. Cyclones from the Indian Ocean, which are becoming more and more frequent, wreak havoc both in rural areas and in the often very densely populated cities. In their wake, entire villages are swept away, rice paddies are affected by higher salinity, and roads become impassable. Schools have to close or are being used as shelters. In the future, the BMZ will provide particular support to the cities of Bangladesh so they are able to protect themselves better against floods, waterlogging and power failures. City administrations, for instance, are being advised on how to make their infrastructure more resilient to extreme weather events. Another focus is on providing support for climate migrants who have been displaced within Bangladesh as a result of flooding. They will be given new employment opportunities, for instance as micro-entrepreneurs, which will open up new income opportunities for them.

Further areas of development cooperation between Bangladesh and Germany are biodiversity conservation, vocational training and the improvement of working conditions in the textile and leather industry. Bangladesh has been an important partner for Germany in South Asia for many years.