Last updated in March 2016
Since Jamaica gained independence in 1962, relations between Germany and Jamaica have been friendly and untroubled, though not particularly intensive. Jamaica sees Germany as an important international partner and as one of the most influential member states of the European Union.
Bilateral development cooperation (worth a total of approximately EUR 255 million) was terminated in 2003, Jamaica having become a middle-income country in terms of per capita earnings. However, Jamaica remains a partner of Germany’s regional development cooperation. Jamaica’s largest international donor is the EU, whose budget is financed by the member states. With a share of around 20 per cent, Germany is the biggest contributor.
According to Federal Statistical Office figures, in 2015 German imports from Jamaica were worth EUR 50.5 million (mainly alumina/bauxite). German exports to Jamaica were worth EUR 53.3 million (mainly motor vehicles, pharmaceutical products and machinery). Jamaica’s balance of trade deficit with Germany stands at EUR 2.7 million.
According to Jamaica Tourist Board figures, 21,371 German tourists visited Jamaica in 2014, 8.7 per cent more than in the previous year. Germany remains in fourth place among the countries of origin.
German direct investment in Jamaica is negligible, though there is indirect German participation in hotel projects involving substantial investments in the country.
The German-Jamaican investment promotion and protection agreement entered into force on 29 May 1996.
Culture and education
With financial support from the Federal Foreign Office, the Jamaican-German Society, which was founded in 1966, offers German language courses leading to a diploma recognised by the Goethe Institute. It also provides support to the German Embassy in organising cultural events.
Jamaican undergraduate and postgraduate students study at German universities on German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation scholarships. There is keen interest in cooperation with German universities and universities of applied sciences.