Germany has been a long standing partner to Uganda. The beginning of the German-Ugandan development cooperation dates back to the year 1964, two years after Uganda declared its independence. Germany’s current bilateral cooperation portfolio focuses on agriculture and rural development, renewable energy and energy efficiency as well as support to refugee hosting communities, good governance, human rights, public finance management and job creation. This thematic approach coupled with a regional focus on, mainly but not exclusively, Northern Uganda allows for a long-term engagement aiming at sustainable development in different sectors as well as quick responses.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19-pandemic in 2020, Germany has supported activities which aim at containing the spread of COVID-19 as well as mitigating the impact of the pandemic and its economic and social consequences. This assistance cuts across various areas: a) medical response including hygiene/WASH and awareness Creation, b) livelihoods amidst the pandemic, c) business empowerment and skills.
Main actors coordinate to implement German bilateral development cooperation in Uganda are:
Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany
The Embassy’s role is to coordinate German development cooperation with the Government of Uganda and other development partners, engaging in general and sector policy dialogue. The Embassy coordinates the activities of the state-owned German implementing agencies GIZ and KfW and offers its services to German NGOs engaged in development programs in Uganda.
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)
GIZ is the implementing agency for Germany’s Technical Cooperation. Its activities are mainly targeted on policy advice and the strengthening of counterpart institutions. This includes the deployment of technical advisers as well as human resource development and training activities. Although sometimes commissioned by other institutions, for the most part, GIZ works on behalf of the German Government.
KfW Development Bank
Being part of state-owned KfW Bankengruppe, KfW Development Bank is in charge of Financial Cooperation on behalf of the German Government, providing grants for development investments. KfW, in agreement with the German Government, can raise additional resources on the capital markets to provide loans to complement grant financing and extend the program volumes.
Other government agencies which are present in Uganda are Deutsche Welle Akademie (DW Akademie) and Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR)
Cooperation through non-state actors
Besides government-to-government cooperation Germany also promotes development in Uganda through German Non-Government-Organizations. The support provided by these actors cuts across various sectors and benefits from the long established relationships of those actors at District and local level. The programs of non-state actors complement the bilateral cooperation and are often instrumental to provide quick responses.
A list of German organisations in Uganda can be found here.
The German Government funds various regional development programs. Some funding can be accessed directly by individual African countries, while other funds are specifically aimed at supporting regional organizations like the African Union (AU), Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the East African Community (EAC) or the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) and their member states including Uganda. A regional organization based in Uganda that has been receiving support by German Technical Cooperation is the Nile Basin Initiative.
Germany extends substantial financial support to Uganda through its contributions to multilateral organizations that fund programs in Uganda. As the largest single contributor to the European Development Fund and one of the top contributors to World Bank, African Development Bank and United Nations development activities, the German Government indirectly contributes an substantial amount on a yearly basis to Uganda’s development, in addition to the bilateral and regional programs.