Germany and Ethiopia: Bilateral relations

04.03.2024 - Article

Relations between Germany and Ethiopia, which have been in place since 1905, have traditionally been good and are maintained by reciprocal high-level visits. The visit by Emperor Haile Selassie in 1954 was the first by a foreign Head of State to the Federal Republic of Germany. Chancellor Scholz visited Ethiopia in May 2023, and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali’s most recent visit to Berlin was in November 2023.

Since the end of the Tigray Conflict in November 2022, Germany has been working both bilaterally and in the EU to intensify relations with Ethiopia. Germany is supporting the country’s implementation of the peace process and its efforts to stabilise the regions affected by the conflict. Furthermore, Germany is helping to mediate in domestic political conflicts, through direct action and indirectly by conducting training activities for the country’s parliament as well as for various political and social groups.

Ethiopia is an important partner for German development cooperation, with a focus on vocational training, development of the private sector and social security, as well as food security and agriculture. Cooperation on human rights, good governance and democracy-building will be further expanded. Germany is also providing financial assistance to combat food crises and acute humanitarian emergencies and is currently Ethiopia's second largest donor of humanitarian assistance.

Ethiopia joined the Compact with Africa during Germany’s G20 Presidency in 2017. Germany is one of the most important buyers of Ethiopian goods, primarily coffee and textiles. The main German exports to Ethiopia are finished products such as machinery, engines, motor vehicles, chemicals and medicines. That said, there has not been much German private-sector investment in the country so far.

German-Ethiopian cultural relations consist of numerous higher education partnerships and work by the Goethe-Institut, the German Academic Exchange Service, the German Embassy School in Addis Ababa and the German Archaeological Institute.


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