Since Jamaica gained independence in 1962, German-Jamaican relations have been friendly and untroubled. Jamaica regards Germany as an important international partner and as one of the most influential member states of the European Union.
Bilateral development cooperation ended in 2003 when Jamaica became a middle-income country. However, the country continues to receive funding for regional projects under the International Climate Initiative run by the Federal Environment Ministry and remains a partner of Germany’s multilateral development cooperation.
The lack of direct flights to Europe in 2020 and 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic meant a sharp fall in the number of German visitors to Jamaica (2021: just under 5000, not including cruise passengers). In terms of tourist numbers, this puts Germany down in 5th place behind the United States (1.3 million), the United Kingdom, Canada and the Caribbean. A direct flight to Germany was reintroduced on 1 July 2021.
There are hardly any larger German direct investments in Jamaica. However, German companies have considerable indirect shares in hotel projects. In 2017, a German investment fund, along with a local electricity supplier, invested in the largest solar project in the Caribbean (37 MW) in Jamaica. The plant was opened on 2 October 2019.
The German-Jamaican Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement entered into force on 29 May 1996.
With financial support from the Federal Foreign Office, the Jamaican-German Society, which was founded in 1966, offers German language courses leading to diplomas recognised by the Goethe-Institut. German is not taught at schools or universities in Jamaica.
Jamaican undergraduates and postgraduates study at German universities on German Academic Exchange Service and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation scholarships.