Germany and Kenya: Bilateral relations

31.05.2023 - Article

Germany and Kenya traditionally have close relations based on partnership. The Federal Republic of Germany was the first country to recognise Kenya under international law after it gained independence in 1963. Two high-level bilateral visits have already taken place in 2023: in March Kenyan President Ruto visited Germany and in May Federal Chancellor Scholz visited Kenya.

Germany regards Kenya as an important partner in a crisis-ridden region and one of its most important economic partners in East Africa. More than 100 German companies have a base in Kenya which many of them use to serve the East African region.

Kenya is an important partner of German development cooperation with the two countries working closely together especially in the fight against climate change and in supporting youth employment. This is also reflected in the climate and development partnership signed in late 2022. The partnership is designed to facilitate even closer cooperation with a view to cutting CO2 emissions, accelerating climate-friendly growth and adapting agriculture to climate change. Furthermore, German development cooperation supports Kenya in its efforts to combat corruption and take in refugees. The current portfolio for bilateral state development cooperation totals more than one billion euro.

Cultural collaboration focuses on education cooperation, scholarships, promotion of film and creative industry. The Goethe Institut in Nairobi has promoted the German language and culture in Kenya since 1963. The regional office of the German Academic Exchange Service in Nairobi was founded in 1973 and promotes academic exchange between Kenya and Germany. The German Academic Exchange Service runs a large number of programmes, awarding scholarships to especially gifted Kenyan students that enable them to study in both Germany and Kenya. Since 1 January 2020, German has been offered as an optional subject at Kenyan schools.


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