Germany and Senegal enjoy friendly political relations. 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 has been an important development cooperation partner for Senegal since the latter’s independence in 1960. To date, the German Government has supported Senegal by providing some 900 million euros in financial commitments and project funding.
The current focus of development cooperation with Senegal is on expanding renewable energies and increasing energy efficiency and access to energy, along with relevant projects in the sphere of university education and vocational training. Germany is also supporting projects to create jobs in Senegal.
Bilateral trade is worth around 150 million euros, with Germany exporting significantly more to Senegal than it imports from the country. Senegal’s most important exports to Germany are food and raw materials. Its main imports from Germany are machinery, vehicles, vehicle parts and chemical products.
A bilateral investment protection agreement has been in place since 1966 and negotiations on a double taxation agreement began in April 2018. There is an EU Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Dakar, while the Delegate Office of German Industry and Commerce in Ghana is also responsible for Senegal.
The Goethe-Institut in Dakar is the main cultural intermediary in Dakar. Cultural programmes featuring music, photography, the visual arts and contemporary 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), as do town-twinning arrangements, school partnerships and partnerships between parishes and dioceses (for example between Thiès and Bamberg). Furthermore, the large German political foundations have offices in Dakar.
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 German Academic Exchange Service has a lector and a language assistant working in Dakar.
Bridges between the two countries are also forged through sport, especially football and athletics. German engagement here includes donations of equipment and courses for Senegalese coaches in Germany.