Germany's new Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development, Svenja Schulze, emphasized the possibility of underfunded German development cooperation in the coming years.
Schulze claims that Germany will not be able to meet its international commitments to fight hunger and the COVID-19 pandemic with the budget planned for the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) by predecessor Gerd Müller.
In light of the worsening COVID-19 pandemic situation in many of Germany's partner countries, Schulze remarked that the BMZ will not be able to react to new challenges with a smaller budget than in previous years.
Schulze emphasized improved climate policy and measures for increasing access to COVID-19 vaccines as the BMZ's priorities going forward. She additionally pointed to the fight against infectious diseases, hunger, poverty, and violence against women as important parts of the development portfolio.
To increase access to COVID-19 vaccines, Schulze highlighted the need to increase appropriate healthcare infrastructure and access to relevant equipment, while continuing to share vaccine doses via the COVAX initiative and supporting COVAX financially. Schulze said she will also make an effort to exceed Germany's planned contribution amount of €1.1 billion (US$1.2 billion) to COVAX in 2022.