Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Angela Merkel, will visit Ghana on the invitation of President Akufo-Addo in late August, the German Embassy in Accra has announced.
Ambassador Christoph Retzlaff, flanked by his deputy, Hans-Helge Sander, said at a brief news conference that Chancellor Merkel is expected to be accompanied by the Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Gerd Müller and a high-level business delegation.
He said the Chancellor, who is arguably the most powerful woman in Europe currently, is scheduled to embark on a tour of Africa, visiting Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal.
The German Ambassador said Chancellor Merkel will spend a day in Ghana and hold high-level meeting with President Akufo-Addo, but added that a chunk of her delegation will stay for another day to deepen economic cooperation and bilateral relations with Ghana.
“The visit to Ghana will be the first of a German Chancellor to Ghana since 2004. This visit underlines the strong and deepening partnership between Ghana and Germany,” he said.
Germany’s Ambassador Christoph Retzlaff (R) with his deputy Hans-Helge Sander at the press conference
“President Akufo-Addo has met Chancellor Merkel two times in Berlin in June 2017 and February 2018. German President, Steinmeier was in Ghana for a state visit in December 2017. The visit will focus on economic cooperation and promoting investment and business in Ghana.”
Ambassador Retzlaff further observed that “the visit will also be an opportunity to discuss and take stock of the G20 ‘Compact with Africa Initiative,’ launched in June 2017 in Berlin under Germany´s G20 presidency,” he said, adding that “the Compact with Africa aims at bringing more private investment to the African partner countries, amongst which Ghana is a front runner.”
“Germany is supporting Ghana through long-standing development cooperation programmes, as well as a new bilateral ‘Investment and Reform Partnership,’ which was launched in December 2017 and brings additional 100 million Euros of German development funds to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency in Ghana and to foster private investment into renewable energy, as well as vocational training in the energy sector.”
He said “the Reform and Investment Partnership supports Germany’s commitments under the G20 Compact with Africa.”
He said another highlight of German-Ghanaian relations will be the “German African Business Summit (GABS) in Accra from 11-13 February 2019,” saying “GABS is the German signature business event in Africa. Top business and government leaders from Germany and Sub-Saharan Africa meet every two years in Africa to promote economic relations between Europe’s largest economy and the fastest growing region in the world.”
By William Yaw Owusu