Germany Pledges To Invest 4 Billion Euros In Green Energy Projects In Africa

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced at the G20 Compact with Africa summit in Berlin on November 20th that the German government will invest 4 billion euros in green energy projects in Africa until 2030. (The 4 billion euros will be put into the common E.U.-Africa Initiative for Green Energy.) The Compact, an initiative Germany established during its chairmanship of the G20 as part of the bloc’s aim to address issues of global economy, intends to improve participating developing countries’ economic conditions in hopes of helping those nations attract foreign private investors.

“This creates jobs and prosperity in these countries,” Scholz said at a news conference. “And the German industry gets reliable suppliers… Africa is our partner of choice when it comes to intensifying our economic relations and moving toward a climate-neutral future together.”

The chancellor did not mention any specific projects that Germany will be taking part in, although he said that the materials used in the green energy should be used in the African countries from which they came.

The pledge to invest a significant amount of money into African projects could help the European economy in its transition to carbon neutrality. In order to achieve a goal of net zero emissions by 2045, Germany must import large amounts of green hydrogen, including from Africa. In addition to emission goals, this pledge also has political implications, as it would increase European presence in Africa. This challenges China’s presence in the region, though China’s financing in Africa has been declining while Europe’s financing has increased. Ultimately, this illustrates the ongoing wrestle for global influence between the West against China and Russia, as both sides reach for the raw materials and economic opportunities Africa continues to represent on the global stage.

Many African leaders have expressed an openness to China’s presence on the continent. “Perhaps China was more audacious, perhaps they have more vision and perhaps they trusted the potential in Africa,” Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki said, coyly continuing, “The African continent is open to different partnerships.”

Germany’s pledge to invest in Africa’s green energy projects illustrates the world’s struggle to maintain geopolitical influence on the African continent. With the emphasis placed on environmental technologies, the pledge is especially significant as a step towards achieving carbon neutrality, which is only becoming more critical as climate change becomes a larger and more impactful global issue. As time goes on, the partnerships represented by German investments in Africa may serve to strengthen relationships between the continent and the developed West.