Business with Germany

The Manager Training Programme of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is an element of Germany’s foreign economic policy. According to the motto “Fit for Partnership”, the programme prepares executives from Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, North and Sub-Saharan Africa for business relations and economic cooperations with German companies – with success on both sides.

A total of above 14,000 executives from 21 countries have completed the Manager Training Programme so far. They come from companies with foreign trade potential. On average, a group of 20 participants is in contact with a total of 60 German, primarily medium-sized companies.

Management training and business contacts

Decisive to the programme’s success is the right mix of imparting knowledge and business practice.

The participants develop their management skills in interactive and practice-oriented training sessions and prepare for contacts with German companies. They learn the specifics of German business culture, and improve their business demeanour and negotiating techniques.

During visits to companies, the participants experience German companies first hand, and familiarise themselves with the modern technology and equipment there. They come into direct contact with potential business partners.

The programme outcome is impressive and testifies to the outstanding economic advantages – both for the participating German companies and for the companies from the 21 partner countries. The Manager Training Programme offers all participating companies access to the respective other market.

Programme format

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH is entrusted to lead the programme. The GIZ offers a four-week practice-oriented specialist training programme for English (in exceptional cases, also Russian) speaking executives of the upper management level with a focus on business relations.

The BMWi Manager Training Programme – A successful partnership model

In 1997, the advanced training programme for Russia as the first partner country was launched. Russian executives were trained in Germany specifically to establish business contacts and initiate cooperation with German companies. More than 5,800 Russia’s senior and junior executives have meanwhile taken part in the training scheme.

The success of this endeavour prompted other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) to launch similar schemes and engage with the programme. The “Ukrainian Initiative” came first, in 2001. Other Eastern European countries such as Belarus and the Republic of Moldova subsequently followed suit, before the Manager Training Programme was ultimately extended to the countries of Central Asia, Asia, North Africa and Latin America, including Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Mongolia, Egypt, Tunisia and Mexico. Particularly emerging markets such as Kazakhstan, China, India and Vietnam are extremely interested in an exchange with Germany, and are therefore also partners in the Manager Training Programme.

The programme offers a win-win situation for many, with the German businesses also benefiting from their involvement. The programme allows them to engage with potential partners and build up a relationship of mutual trust, which is essential for a long-term cooperation. The seconding companies also stand to gain from the contacts brought back from Germany and their employeesʼ newly-acquired management skills. The outcome is an enhanced business exchange between Germany and the partner countries.