• Germany edition
 
Zimbabwe told to protect German firms
Photo: DPA

Zimbabwe told to protect German firms

Published: 04 Dec 2012 07:07 GMT+01:00
Updated: 04 Dec 2012 07:07 GMT+01:00

The "law is more likely to deter investors than to help create more wealth within your country," Niebel told a news conference in Harare on Monday. His was the first high-profile visit to Zimbabwe by a German official in 15 years.

The country has been shunned by western nations because of to violence and rights abuses blamed on supporters of President Robert Mugabe.

In 2010, Mugabe signed a law requiring foreign-owned companies to sell 51 percent of the firms to black Zimbabweans, and Niebel said this made German companies in Zimbabwe vulnerable.

"At present Zimbabwe's government does not guarantee the protection of German companies' investments even though it has made a commitment under international law to do so," he noted.

"I expressly call for compliance with the investment protection agreement for Germany companies," Niebel added.

He also voiced support for "a fair and credible" and violence-free constitutional referendum and election next year to avoid a repeat of events that marred the 2008 general vote.

Niebel held talks with Vice President Joice Mujuru and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, but said his visit did not mean that ties between the two countries had returned to normal.

Germany stopped giving direct aid to Mugabe's government in 2002 following violent seizures of white-owned farms and bloody elections.

Development aid would remain "suspended until democracy and the rule of law

have been restored," the German minister said.

AFP/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

09:56 December 4, 2012 by twisted
To have anything to do with this dictator and his country other than minimal diplomatic relations is wrong. Pull the companies out.
10:43 December 4, 2012 by Berlin fuer alles
If these German companies were run ethically they would not be there in the first place. If you play with the Devil don't be surprised if he changes the rules during the game.
10:50 December 4, 2012 by blackboot11
@ Berlin fuer alles: You are SO on POINT with your comment above.
11:34 December 4, 2012 by lucksi
Yes Mr. Mugabe. You can violate the rights of your people, heck, kill however many you like, but don't you dare touch our economic interests. That will earn you the first finger waggling in 15 years.
12:09 December 4, 2012 by raandy
Mugabe, hard to believe he still has the reins. This guy ruined a country that in the beginning had a lot going for it ,the former Rodesia named after Cecil Rhodes.

The diamonds , the so called blood diamonds are sold secretly on the world market the proceeds going in Mugabe's coffers.

I was in hopes that Morgan Tsvangirai would be able to get the sanctions lifted by establishing a legitimate Government but this has never happened.

The worlds thrust for profit (greed) and minerals is mainly responsible for his longevity.
12:30 December 4, 2012 by Eric1
Governments are greedy, especially socialist governments. They want to take what private individuals and companies have created.
13:43 December 4, 2012 by Baynik
I am South African and have seen what this evil man is doing to his own people! They are causing a famine in what used to be one of the most productive lands in Southern Africa and no-one does anything! Farms that have been carved out in wild African bushes to produce food for many have been taken away by force and given to Mugabe's friends who now sit on it not producing as much as a patch of vegetables to fill a pot of soup! Robert Mugabe is an absolute dictator who lives in luxury while his own people are flocking to South Africa for food and work! Why in the world would you continue to do business in his country just to enrich him more? A typical European double standard policy!
14:10 December 4, 2012 by michael4096
@eric1 - Mugabe the socialist?

I'll have to think about that one!
20:29 December 6, 2012 by Englishted
@michael4096

Don't think about it too long ,

Eric has the brain power of a backward dead tadpole.

@ Baynik

And South Africa's policy is not double standard? who have the most dealings with him and often back him against anyone else.
Today's headlines
Germany's first Iraq arms delivery is ready
The weapons are ready to be sent. Photo: Bundeswehr/Pulpanek

Germany's first Iraq arms delivery is ready

Germany’s military said on Thursday it was ready to send its first shipment of arms to Kurds fighting Islamic extremists Isis in northern Iraq. READ  

Police find dead baby in train station locker
The lockers at Hamburg central station. Photo: DPA

Police find dead baby in train station locker

Police in Hamburg found the body of a baby hidden in a train station locker on Thursday morning. The woman believed to be its mother is in psychiatric care. READ  

German of the Week
Munich's mayor practices for Oktoberfest
Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter. Photo: DPA

Munich's mayor practices for Oktoberfest

Dieter Reiter has been in office for less than five months and will this week take on one of the Munich mayor's most important duties - tapping the first keg at Oktoberfest. He is only the city's second mayor in the last 21 years. READ  

Europeans descended from three tribes
The skull of a farmer from Stuttgart examined for the study. Photo: Joanna Drath, University of Tübingen

Europeans descended from three tribes

German researchers have traced the origins of modern Europeans to a migratory melting pot of three ancient tribes dating back 8,000 years. READ  

Germans return 'stolen' parts of Great Pyramid
The pyramids at Giza. Photo: DPA

Germans return 'stolen' parts of Great Pyramid

Fragments of the Great Pyramid of Giza, which were allegedly stolen by German archaeologists last year, have been returned to Egypt from Germany. But the case against those who allegedly took the samples is continuing. READ  

Oktoberfest 2014
Your guide to Munich Oktoberfest's tents
Photo: DPA

Your guide to Munich Oktoberfest's tents

There are 14 "tents" at Munich's Oktoberfest, all with their own uniqueness and theme. In the second of The Local's four-part guide to the world's biggest beer festival, we look at some of the best ones. READ  

Drunk teachers ruin school trip to Hamburg
Photo: DPA

Drunk teachers ruin school trip to Hamburg

A school trip was cancelled after just one day when two teachers got so drunk while they were supposed to be looking after pupils in Hamburg that police had to be called. READ  

Where to find the speed cameras today
Photo: DPA

Where to find the speed cameras today

Police deployed 13,000 officers across Germany on Thursday to catch speeding drivers in a so called "Blitzmarathon". Here is where the radar guns are. READ  

US WWII bomb forces 11,000 from homes
The area of the town centre evacuated. Photo: Lüneberg Stadt

US WWII bomb forces 11,000 from homes

Thousands of people in the centre of an historic town in central Germany had to leave their homes late on Wednesday evening after a 250kg bomb was found. READ  

Who is listening to Berlin's music?
Photo: DPA

Who is listening to Berlin's music?

A study by music-streaming service Spotify has revealed the global reach of Berlin-born music, with genres originating in the capital finding a loyal audience in some unlikely places. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Marks & Spencer
Sponsored Article
Fashion Ladies of the Local: Win a New Autumn Look
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Oktoberfest 2014: The best and worst in dirndl fashion
Photo: Shutterstock
Gallery
Ten German words you'll never want to hear again
Photo: DPA
Education
German universities tumble in global rankings
Photo: DPA
Tech
Netflix launches in Germany (in English too)
Photo: DPA
Politics
These men want to be the next mayor of Berlin
Photo: Shutterstock
Business & Money
The three types of firms hiring foreigners
Photo: DPA/ESA
Tech
VIDEO: How one German astronaut sees Earth
Photo: DPA
Berlin
Frisky couple shock Berlin commuters
Photo: Bayernpartei/DPA
Politics
Why some Bavarians want a Scottish 'Yes'
Photo: DPA
Gallery
12 things to do in Berlin for less than a latte
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,370
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd