Germany and Jamaica: Bilateral relations

28.09.2022 - Article

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 via CARICOM for regional projects under the International Climate Initiative run by the Federal Environment Ministry and remains a partner of Germany’s multilateral development cooperation.

In 2020, just under 20,000 Germans visited Jamaica (excluding cruise passengers). This puts Germany in fourth place after the United States (1.6 million), Canada (400,000) and the UK (215,000). As a result of the COVID‑19 pandemic, there was a huge drop in the number of German visitors in 2020 as for nine months of the year there were no direct flights to Europe and transit via the United States was not possible. A direct flight to Germany was reintroduced on 1 July 2021.

There are hardly any major German direct investments in Jamaica. One larger project is the German-Jamaican-Turkish joint venture German Ship Repair Jamaica Limited, the purpose of which is to establish a shipyard in Kingston, Jamaica. In addition, 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.

A small number of Jamaican undergraduates and postgraduates study at German universities on German Academic Exchange Service and Alexander von Humboldt Foundation scholarships.

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