The latest issue of akzente magazine turns the spotlight on Africa
Africa is diverse, with more than a billion people living in 54 countries, vast cultural riches and a multifaceted history. Africa also faces a number of challenges: high population growth, widespread poverty and poor access to water and sanitation. Various initiatives are under way to improve living conditions and this year, under Germany’s presidency, Africa is a priority for the G20 for the first time.
The current issue of GIZ’s akzente magazine, entitled Africa – a continent in transition, looks at some of the challenges and showcases successful projects which are improving living conditions on a sustainable basis. It also features a guest article in which German Development Minister Gerd Müller provides some insights into his Marshall Plan with Africa.
So how can our neighbouring continent make the most of its potential? This question is explored in the akzente essay by journalist Bettina Rühl. The answer lies in education, greater economic diversification and efforts to fight corruption. Lack of synchronicity dominates African development: while cities in Kenya and Rwanda have a booming IT sector, rural areas still have no power lines. Infrastructural development is vital in improving people’s prospects for the future.
Africa is also the continent with by far the largest number of GIZ staff – 4,700 in total, all of whom are committed to achieving sustainable economic development. As one outcome of their efforts, 10 million farmers in 14 countries are benefiting from GIZ’s cooperation with some 100 partner organisations to improve rice, cocoa, cotton and cashew farming techniques. More efficient growing methods, higher yields, increased income – this is a formula that can work, as a report about Nigerian rice farmer Hajiya Gambo Auwalu shows.