Leaders from Africa and Germany are meeting in Berlin for a conference aimed at promoting sustainable development and economic growth in Africa.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen are joining German Chancellor Angela Merkel in opening the conference.

The German government says the two-day meeting of the African Partnership Forum will serve to prepare recommendations for summits of the Group of Eight and the African Union. G8 leaders are scheduled to meet in northern Germany on June 6.

The Africa Partnership Initiative was established by the G8 in 2003 as a way to encourage dialogue between African nations and the world's wealthiest countries.

Germany currently holds the rotating European Union and G8 presidencies.