Scholz promises food aid

At the start of his Africa trip, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has promised help for those of the continent’s countries that are affected by the global food crisis.

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Dakar (dpa) - At the start of his Africa trip, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) has promised help for those of the continent’s countries that are affected by the global food crisis and has offered cooperation to Senegal in gas production. After talks with Senegalese President Macky Sall in Dakar, the chancellor said that it made sense to “intensively pursue” such cooperation, describing it as a “common concern”.

At issue is the development of a gas field off the West African coast, in which Mauritania is also involved along with Senegal. Scholz said that a discussion on this had begun. “We will also continue this very intensively at the technical level following these talks.” Sall stressed that Senegal was ready to supply Europe with gas.

As far as the current food crisis is concerned, the chancellor warned that many countries could face great difficulties in feeding their populations. He said the Russian blockade of wheat exports from Ukraine had caused food prices to rise and had exacerbated the crisis, especially in the East African countries of Somalia and Ethiopia and in northern Kenya, which have been hit by massive drought. “Many countries around the world are being affected by this war even though they are a long way away from it,” Scholz said.

Dakar is the first stop on Scholz’s inaugural visit to Africa since taking office six months ago. Other stops on the three-day trip include Niger, one of the poorest countries in the world, and South Africa, Germany’s most important partner in sub-Saharan Africa.