October 30, 2003

Namibia: Germany promises to support land reform

Germany has expressed satisfaction with the way Namibia has managed its land reform programme and has promised to back it financially, technically and with legal expertise.

German Foreign Affairs Minister Joschka Fischer told a media briefing at State House that "constructive and productive" discussions were held on the Namibian land reform programme and that his country had pledged further assistance. "What we can do, we will do. We will also push for the EU (European Union) to support Namibia. Land reform is an important issue in Namibia and the region," Fischer said.

Germany has already pledged to pump 23 million Euro into the Namibian economy over the next two years. The funding will be channelled to road improvement, land reform, rural development, natural resources and economic growth. Some 16 million Euro will be for financial assistance, while seven million Euro will be earmarked for technical assistance.

In addition, an unused 4,2 million Euro from a previous two-year co-operation agreement was re-allocated to Namibia. Namibian MP George Elia Kaiyamo, former Chargé d’Affairs in Austria, called on Germany to scrap the visa requirements for Namibians and appealed for funds to support the expansion of German language education in Namibian schools. (The Namibian, Windhoek)

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