Germany and Burundi: Bilateral relations

31.05.2023 - Article

From 1885 to 1916 Germany was a colonial power in Burundi. After the country gained its independence in 1962, Germany was one of the first partners to launch development cooperation and enjoys a good reputation there because of its significant contributions to the country’s development.

After the years of international isolation between 2015 and 2020 in the wake of an attempted coup in 2015 and subsequent unrest, the new President Ndayishimiye is now taking a more open approach in terms of foreign policy. As a result, Burundi has now relaunched political dialogue with the European Union and its member states.

In 2021, Burundi imported goods worth 981 million US dollars. Germany ranks 14th providing 1.5% of imported goods (14 million US dollars). Imports from Germany increased by 15% compared to the previous year.

In 2021, Burundi exported goods worth 113 million US dollars. This signalled a halving of exports compared to the previous year (2020: 218 million US dollars). Germany receives 7% of exports, which are mainly coffee.

There is currently no bilateral development partnership between Germany and Burundi. However, Germany is providing support through the European Union and promotes individual projects in the sphere of humanitarian assistance, stabilisation and cultural cooperation.

There is a regional twinning programme with Baden-Württemberg which was formalised in 2014 by a joint declaration signed by the Minister-President of Land Baden-Württemberg and the Burundian Foreign Minister. This partnership is financed by the Foundation for Development Cooperation – Baden-Württemberg.

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