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Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development : Dirk Niebel leaves for Uganda and Rwanda

05/29/2013 | 03:03am US/Eastern

29.05.2013 |

Berlin - German De­vel­op­ment Minister Dirk Niebel (FDP) left this morning on an official trip to Uganda and Rwanda. Both coun­tries have made major progress in de­vel­op­ment terms in recent years, and have become engines of economic and political integration in the region around Africa's Great Lakes.

"Uganda and Rwanda are pursuing de­vel­op­ment strategies geared to promoting growth and private sector de­vel­op­ment. The success they have had proves that they were right to adopt these strategies. Germany has been supporting their political course with de­vel­op­ment co­op­er­a­tion projects that are designed to spread economic growth as broadly as possible. It is im­por­tant that both coun­tries observe human rights, in order to ensure that any de­vel­op­ment progress made is sus­tain­able in the long term. I would also like to encourage both coun­tries to continue playing a constructive role in safeguarding peace and security, and to push ahead with economic and political integration in the Great Lakes region," said De­vel­op­ment Minister Niebel before his departure.

Tomorrow Minister Niebel will personally conclude the bilateral gov­ern­ment negotiations with Uganda on de­vel­op­ment co­op­er­a­tion for the next three years. At the previous gov­ern­ment negotiations, Germany committed 120 million euros to Uganda for projects in energy, water supply and sanitation, as well as sus­tain­able economic de­vel­op­ment.

"We want to continue with de­vel­op­ment co­op­er­a­tion at the same level and with projects in these same priority areas. Because of the issue of corruption, I will propose to the Ugandan gov­ern­ment that, in future, instead of providing budget support, we support a programme specifically aimed at improving the management of public finances. Furthermore, for Germany, it is im­por­tant that human rights such as freedom of assembly and non-discrimination of minority groups are observed in Uganda. To ensure this, Germany's gov­ern­ment is prepared to provide support to the National Planning Authority, Uganda's Human Rights Commission and its Equal Rights Commission," added Niebel.

Over the next few days, De­vel­op­ment Minister Niebel will have meetings with Uganda's Vice President Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi, the chairman of the Human Rights Commission and the chairman of the National Audit Office. The main focus of the project visits will be co­op­er­a­tion with the private sector in the field of renewable energies.

De­vel­op­ment Minister Niebel's delegation will include representatives of German medium-sized businesses such as Kirchner Solar Group and KSB, who will show how they are engaged successfully with the German gov­ern­ment in various de­vel­op­ment co­op­er­a­tion activities. On Sunday, Dirk Niebel will travel on to Rwanda, where he will hold political talks and then visit German-Rwandan de­vel­op­ment projects, before departing late Monday evening.

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