Last updated in October 2018
Political relations are friendly and untroubled. Germany and Barbados celebrated the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations on 14 March 2017. Barbados is a close and reliable partner of Germany in multilateral bodies such as the United Nations and in international negotiations on climate change. In September 2015, Federal Chancellor Merkel met in New York with Barbadian Prime Minister Stuart in his capacity as Chairman of the Conference of the CARICOM Heads of Government. At the elections in May 2018, the party which had previously formed the opposition won all 30 seats in parliament led by the new Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley.
Bilateral economic relations with Barbados are relatively insignificant. Barbados’s main exports to Germany are agricultural products. The country does, however, obtain substantial revenue from visits by German tourists, with 10,000 people visiting Barbados every year on holiday (there are direct flights between the two countries).
A bilateral investment protection and promotion agreement has been in place since 2002. Investment is hampered by the country’s weak economy and a budget deficit that is estimated at 7% of GDP. Barbados is one of the most indebted countries in the world with national debt amounting to 137% of GDP in 2016.
Other cooperation and trade accords exist within the framework of the agreements between the European Union and the ACP (Africa, Caribbean, Pacific) states as well as between the EU and CARIFORUM (CARICOM member states plus the Dominican Republic). As the Caribbean country with the closest economic ties to Europe, Barbados is paying special attention to the further development of trade relations with the EU in the light of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).
In development cooperation, Barbados has indirect links with Germany through German agreements with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), cooperation focusing on sustainable economic development, the promotion of renewable energy and adaptation to climate change. Since 2011, Barbados has no longer been classed as a developing country and official bilateral development cooperation has been terminated.
German institutions such as the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), the National Metrology Institute of Germany (PTB) and the Centrum für internationale Migration und Entwicklung (International Centre for Migration and Development – CIM) work together with the following Barbados-based organisations: the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ), the Caribbean Export Development Agency (CEDA) and the Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE).
This text is intended as a source of basic information. It is regularly updated. No liability can be accepted for the accuracy or completeness of its contents.