German Ugandan relations
Germany established diplomatic relations with Uganda immediately after the country gained independence on 9 October 1962. The consulate that had previously been set up was converted into an embassy.
Germany enjoys a positive image in Uganda. Germany’s engagement in the United Nations Security Council and mutual visits by the two countries’ heads of state and other high-ranking visitors have raised Germany’s profile in Uganda. Former German Federal President Horst Köhler paid an official visit to Uganda in February 2008 and then Federal Foreign Minister Westerwelle visited Kampala in July 2010. The former Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Niebel was in Uganda in May and June 2013 for intergovernmental talks on development cooperation. Members of the German Bundestag make regular trips to Uganda. Bundestag President Norbert Lammert visited Uganda in late March 2012 to attend the 126th Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly, which was hosted by Uganda.
Bilateral economic relations are regulated through a number of agreements and protocols (investment protection, Financial and Technical Cooperation). Among the EU countries, Germany is an important trading partner of Uganda (with bilateral trade worth EUR 166 million in 2013), along with the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Belgium. In trade with Uganda, Germany records a deficit of EUR 21 million. Uganda’s main exports to Germany are coffee, fish, small quantities of other agricultural produce, cobalt and simple technical products. Uganda’s main imports from Germany are machinery and chemical products.
Development and humanitarian cooperation
German-Ugandan development cooperation began exactly 50 years ago, in 1964. At the most recent Ugandan-German intergovernmental negotiations in May 2013, a new commitment worth EUR 120 million was agreed upon for a three-year period.
German-Ugandan development cooperation focuses on promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency, water supply and sanitation and sustainable economic development in rural areas, including adapted financial services.
Support is also being provided for additional measures to strengthen public financial management and increase domestic revenue.
The Federal Government’s focus in its development cooperation with Uganda is to help develop the north of the country by providing expert advice and conducting peacekeeping operations and by concentrating its investment projects on this region. At the 2013 intergovernmental negotiations, a new project to strengthen human rights was agreed upon. In addition, the German side is providing development-oriented emergency and transitional aid in Uganda’s Karamoja district.
Government development cooperation is implemented by the KfW Development Bank (Financial Cooperation) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ, Technical Cooperation). The Federal Government also supports the work of Germany’s political foundations (the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation have their own offices in Kampala), churches and non-governmental organisations. In addition, some 100 associations and initiatives in Germany support projects focusing on Uganda.