The German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) is one of the most important regions for innovation, technology and industry in Europe and the economic hub of Germany.
As a partner of the federal government of NRW for many years, the GIZ’s State Office in North Rhine-Westphalia builds bridges reaching out from the metropole region into the whole world in order to benefit from the region's strengths on a global level.
As part of this, the State Office NRW ties close cooperations with the federal government, the European Union, non-governmental organisations and private businesses in order to create valuable synergies.
On behalf of the federal government of NRW, the GIZ’s State Office in North Rhine-Westphalia has been organising training programmes for young professionals from the Chinese partner provinces of Jiangsu, Sichuan and Shanxi for over 20 years. These programmes primarily address the topics of foreign trade, environmental protection, energy and administrative reforms – providing important impulses for the economic relations between North Rhine-Westphalia and China. The Contact to the alumni of the training programmes is being maintained through seminars and visits to trade exhibitions in China as well as through the virtual learning platform Global Campus 21®.
The State Office NRW coordinates the programme Becas Chile on behalf of the Chilean government. The programme's objective is to promote the competitiveness of the Chilean economy. In the 2011/2012 programme cycle, a total of 60 experts from Chile are given the opportunity to obtain further qualifactions in the German dual vocational education system over the period of one year. As part of this, four tailor-made vocational training programmes have been created in the promising sectors of mining, information technology and tourism.
The success of training programmes heavily depends on the personal and social environment of the programme participants in North Rhine-Westphalia. The GIZ’s State Offices are thus entrusted with the responsibility for holding dialogues to encourage contact with the German public, and providing advising services and housing. With the support of volunteers, the participants of training programmes are given the opportunity to gain in-depths impressions and experiences of life in the metropole region of NRW.
Cooperation with the private business community is central to the State Office in NRW and its work. Many private companies in North Rhine-Westphalia support GIZ training programmes by offering trainee positions and instructors. In return, the business community of North Rhine-Westphalia can utilize the great potential offered by GIZ alumni to benefit their subsidiaries and business contacts abroad. Many firms and economic institutions who support GIZ’s efforts are members of the Carl Duisberg Working Group North Rhine-Westphalia, a key partner for GIZ in North Rhine-Westphalia.
The AFRIKA KOMMT! (AFRICA IS COMING!) initiative for future leaders from Subsaharan Africa was set-up by leading DAX-listed enterprises and large family-run companies in Germany in the year 2008. The main idea behind the initiative is to provide young African managers from Sub-Saharan African countries with an opportunity to come to Germany and familiarise themselves with our country, language and business concepts. At the same time, the programme provides a framework for the sustainable economic cooperation with Africa. The GIZ's State Office NRW is responsible for the implementation and coordination of the AFRIKA KOMMT! programme.