Last updated in August 2018

Political relations

Germany and Senegal enjoy good political relations. Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel and Senegalese President Macky Sall last met in late November 2017 on the sidelines of the African Union-European Union Summit in Abidjan. The two countries share common interests, such as supporting the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission (MINUSMA) in Mali or the work of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. Senegal is one of the partner countries in the Compact with Africa initiative, which was launched during the German G20 Presidency in 2017 and is aimed at promoting economic development on the African continent by improving the framework conditions for investment.

Germany maintains five political foundations in Dakar (the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (FNF), the Heinrich Böll Foundation (HBS), the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) and the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation (RLS)), as well as the Goethe-Institut, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW).

Development cooperation

Germany has been an important development cooperation partner for Senegal since its independence in 1960. The German Government has so far supported Senegal with financial commitments and projects to the tune of some 900 million euros.

Development cooperation with Senegal focuses on expanding renewable energies, increasing energy efficiency and access to energy, together with relevant projects in the sphere of university education and vocational training. Germany is also supporting projects to create jobs in Senegal. Economic Cooperation and Development Minister Gerd Müller visited Senegal in August 2016.

Economic relations

Trade between Germany and Senegal is relatively modest. In 2017, Germany imported goods worth approximately 17.3 million euros from Senegal and exported goods worth 171.1 million euros to Senegal. Senegal’s main exports to Germany are food and raw materials. Its main imports from Germany are machinery, motor vehicles and vehicle parts as well as chemical products.

A bilateral investment protection agreement has been in place since 1966 while negotiations on an agreement on the avoidance of double taxation began in April 2018. There is no German Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Senegal, nor are there any Delegate Offices of German Industry and Commerce.

Cultural relations

The principal cultural intermediary is the Goethe-Institut in Dakar. Cultural programmes featuring music, photography, the visual arts and modern dance, as well as the promotion of creative industries, are just some of the facets of the lively exchange in this area. Cooperation in higher education and research also plays an important role, (scholarship programmes of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (AvH) and the Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative; support of the African research cooperation West African Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) and a research chair for mathematics at the African Institute for Mathematical Science; research project of the German Historical Institute (DHI) in Paris together with the Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar), as do town twinning arrangements and school partnerships as well as partnerships between parishes and dioceses (for example between Thiès and Bamberg).

German ranks fourth among the foreign languages taught in Senegalese schools. There are German Departments at the Université Gaston Berger de Saint-Louis and the Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar. The DAAD has a lector and a language assistant working in Dakar.  

Bridges between the two countries are also forged through sports, especially football and track and field athletics. German engagement here includes donations of equipment and courses for Senegalese coaches in Germany.

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.

Additional content

Senegal is a partner country of German development cooperation. For more information please visit the website of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development

Top of page