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Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (Logo)Facts & Findings

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Donald J. Trump’s election as president of the United States of America has prompted an uproar in international politics. What does that mean for German-American relations? In a series of threes papers, the KAS Working Group of Young Foreign Policy Experts comes up with a number of suggestions as to how to react. This second paper deals with the future of multilateral cooperation based on the examples of health, climate and UN reform.

Key Points

  • The US commitment to multilateralism has always been subject to ruptures. But the changes threatened by Trump and already partly realised is of a different kind.
  • Germany’s interest in well-functioning multilateralism is particularly high in the fields of climate change and global healthcare. The United Nations play a particularly important role in these areas. Germany should employ a two-pronged strategy in these fields: soften the impact of US disengagement while continuing to seek cooperation.
  • Where global health is concerned, the key challenge is to prevent an increase in the maternal death rate. Positive measures may include educational initiatives as well as greater investment in specialist medical personnel and technical equipment.
  • In the area of global climate policy, Germany can provide support through new sustainability coalitions. Market-based solutions are promising where climate finance and climate risk insurance are concerned.
  • Trump’s outlook on multilateral cooperation also offers some opportunities. If Germany succeeds in transforming planned savings processes into reform processes, this may strengthen multilateral structures in the long term.


ImageElisabeth Enders
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