Assistance and financing options in development cooperation

Project description

Title: Agency for Business and Economic Development
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: global
Overall term: 2015 to 2023

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Implementing 2030 Agenda requires a significant expansion in cooperation between German development cooperation and the private sector. At the same time, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) is registering an increase in enquiries from the private sector about ways of working together. There is therefore great demand for an efficient point of contact for the private sector. This point of contact, as the sole and central advisory agency (a ‘one-stop shop’), should be able to take action on both technical and financial cooperation instruments. Through the Agency for Business and Economic Development (AWE), BMZ intends to improve the structural foundations for interaction between development cooperation and the German and European private sector.


The foundations for interaction between development cooperation and the German and European private sector are structurally improved.

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In the spirit of forging a responsibility pact for sustainable development, AWE supports the German and European private sector in activities that have a positive impact on poverty reduction and sustainable development in the partner countries. In the process, AWE supplements existing BMZ instruments and approaches for cooperation with the private sector by connecting them with one another and unlocking synergy effects. It provides an efficient central point of contact for companies and business organisations seeking advice and information regarding the various cooperation offers. 

First of all, therefore, the project forms a gateway for companies to access BMZ. It responds to enquiries and provides advice on BMZ instruments as well as ways of cooperating with the implementing organisations. AWE advisors provide information to German and European companies and associations in order to strengthen engagement in developing countries and emerging economies. Furthermore, AWE supports BMZ in positioning development policy content vis à vis the private sector, for example by preparing and carrying out meetings. The project also manages knowledge on the various BMZ approaches in cooperation with the private sector and performs press and public relations work.

In terms of subject areas, AWE addresses key topics of development cooperation: food and agriculture, energy, trade, education, construction, tourism, health care, international organisations, mobility, textiles, social entrepreneurship, environmental and social standards, finance, information and communications technology, mechanical and plant engineering, water and waste management, and municipal companies. 

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG) implement AWE as an equal partner. 



  • Up to the end of September 2019 alone, AWE responded to 6,131 enquiries from the private sector, partner institutions and interested members of the public. 
  • AWE is represented at more than 70 events each year. 
  • According to an external survey performed in 2020, 78 per cent of clients would recommend AWE to others.
  • A help desk for the National Action Plan for Business and Human Rights began work in 2018.

Last update: December 2020

Additional information