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In Sierra Leone: Denmark support child education, renewable energy

HomeNewsIn Sierra Leone: Denmark support child education, renewable energy

In Sierra Leone: Denmark support child education, renewable energy

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As a new initiative, Denmark, member of Team Europe, is rolling-out a co-operation with Sierra Leone on education and green transition. The aim is to support Sierra Leone’s own ambitions and strengthen broader relations with the West African coastal states.

The Danish Government launched its work to strengthen its engagement in Africa. In the coming months, the Government will lay the groundwork for how Denmark, among others, through the European Union (EU), can enter into equal partnerships on the continent.

Denmark and Sierra Leone have signed an agreement on concrete co-operation projects within education and the expansion of sustainable energy.

The Danish Minister for Development Cooperation and Global Climate Policy, Dan Jørgensen said: “The Government wants to strengthen Denmark’s alliances in Africa. Military coups, terrorist organisations and the Wagner Group are unfortunately what many Danes associate with several countries in West Africa. Fortunately, this is far from the whole story. Denmark has good experience of cooperating with West African coastal states, and Sierra Leone is interested in cooperating on educating their population and ensuring the green transition. We know Sierra Leone from our co-operation on the climate agenda and we hope to serve with this country on the UN Security Council in 2025. It is a new partner country, and we are starting with a smaller effort – but it symbolises a different and broader Danish engagement in Africa.” 

Specifically, Denmark will support two new initiatives in Sierra Leone. One is to ensure that children attend school early and stay in school. Denmark contributes DKK 15 million (around 48 million new Leones) channelled through the Education Outcome Fund, to which the EU and the Danish LEGO Foundation also contribute. Education in Sierra Leone was also supported in last year’s Danish national broadcaster “Xmas calendar”.

Denmark will also support efforts for more stable and affordable access to sustainable energy in Sierra Leone based on solar cells, among other things. Here, the DKK 20 million (around 64.5 million new Leones) is channelled via the EU, which supports a number of solar parks in eastern Sierra Leone. Both initiatives have been requested by the Government of Sierra Leone.

Sierra Leone’s Chief Minister, David Sengeh, participated in the Danish capital Copenhagen in the kick-off event for the Danish Government’s work to strengthen its engagement in Africa. In his speech, Sengeh emphasised innovation, education and the need for a new partnership with African countries.

Chief Minister David Sengeh said: “Denmark’s desire for strengthened equal partnerships with African countries is the picture of a new era for Africa. Sierra Leone has a huge appetite for green solutions, renewable energy and the education of our children and youth. We have a difficult past, but we will create our own future. Countries that support this vision are preferred partners.”

The Danish Government will present its strategy for a strengthened engagement in Africa after the summer holidays.

 

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