Europe

World will have a lot of ‘very influential countries’ in next decades: German chancellor

In interview with DW, Olaf Scholz stresses importance of promoting deeper ties with all democratic states

Oliver Towfigh Nia   | 24.05.2022
World will have a lot of ‘very influential countries’ in next decades: German chancellor

BERLIN

The world will see the emergence of “a lot of very influential countries” in the next decades, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Tuesday.

“All countries with a colonial past have to be very honest and admit that… they have a responsibility (to build) better relations with the (former colonies), for instance, in Africa,” Scholz said in an interview with Deutsche Welle (DW) during his visit to South Africa.

“My view is that the world will have a lot of very influential countries in the next decades that are not just Russia, China, United States and Europe,” he said.

“This is one of the reasons why I invited Indonesia and India, Senegal and South Africa or Argentina to participate in our G7 meeting in Germany this summer, because it’s a starting point for understanding that the world is something we (share) responsibility for,” he added.

Scholz stressed the importance of creating a multilateral world, saying: “Africa is the continent next to Europe and so it is of essence that we work intensely to have very good relations with all the states in Africa, and it is important that we develop our relations with all the democratic states around the globe.”

“South Africa is a democracy, Senegal, Niger – and this is why I visited (these countries) and why I think it is important that we continue to work together,” he said, adding: “The world has a good future if we cooperate, if we understand that there will be a lot of very relevant states in the future.”

Pointing to the multiple effects of the Russia-Ukraine war on African countries, the chancellor said: “It is obvious that a lot of countries are suffering from this war and from the Russian aggression, and we are very determined to help these countries.”

Scholz highlighted multilateral efforts to fight war-related food emergencies and economic consequences.

“We are working on supporting the World Food Program and starting an initiative against the shortages that are coming up now. We will work together on a global level, with the United Nations, and we are trying to convince all other countries that have the means to do so, to do it together with us,” he said.

“But the best thing to do is end the war, and if Russia stopped its aggression and was ready for peace,” he went on to say.

He said that his government was talking directly with Russian President Vladimir Putin to tell that the war “will never have a good outcome for his own country. (Russia) will go back in their opportunities of economic development for decades, they will suffer and they are suffering.”

Referring to energy talks taking place at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss town of Davos this week, Scholz said: “We will have a very difficult situation if we look at fuel prices. Obviously, it will be not feasible to subsidize them down, especially on a global level. But it is necessary that we start to increase the supply with gas, with fuel, and to make it feasible for the countries to pay their bills.”

He added that negotiations were underway with all countries exporting oil and gas in order to “convince them to increase their capacities. This would help the world market.”

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