19 January 2021, Barcelona. The UfM Secretary General, Nasser Kamel, held an online meeting with Christoph Rauh, Africa Director at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The meeting took place in the context of Germany’s ongoing support to the UfM Secretariat, which is implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).
They discussed the successful outcomes of the second edition of the high-level UfM Trade and Investment Forum, which was held on 12 November 2020 during the German EU Council Presidency, under the auspices of the BMZ. At the Forum, which renewed the momentum for trade and investment in the region, Germany announced its support for a future UfM Hub for Jobs, Trade and Investment Promotion under the UfM umbrella. UfM and BMZ stressed the strategic importance of this Hub for the UfM’s work in the region and agreed to advance its establishment in the course of 2021.
The meeting also discussed the current implementation of the UfM Grant Scheme for employment promotion – Regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was set up in 2020, with the support of German Development Cooperation. Through the Grant Scheme, the UfM actively supports regional non-profit organizations in the creation of job opportunities during the COVID-19-induced economic crisis.
The cooperation between the BMZ and the UfM Secretariat is based on a partnership agreement between both institutions from 2018, which focuses on the areas of Employment and Trade and which has led numerous activities and initiatives by the UfM Secretariat.