Country Report on International Trade and Finance: Germany
Germany is located in the central portion of Europe where it shares a board with eight other nations; the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France to the west, Switzerland and Austria to the south, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, and with the North Sea and the Baltic Sea forming the northern border. The climate in this region varies based on elevation and proximity to the coastal areas. Along the coast temperatures are controlled by a maritime climate, while inland and to the southern regions the climate ranges from continental to mountain where more extreme seasonal changes occur. According to the ...view middle of the document...
In addition to Germany’s educational system, it maintains a well structured public and private health care system. Since the 1970’s, these important social components have built a strong base helping to propel Germany forward as the global economic leader that it is today.
Germany as a Strong World Economic Presence
Following World War II, Germany was divided into two states; East Germany and West Germany. Germany stayed a divided nation from 1945 until the infamous fall of the Berlin wall and the reunification of the two states in 1990. West Germany established a social market economy and, starting in the early 1950’s, saw great economic growth and prosperity. East Germany, on the other hand, embraced a Soviet-style command economy and did not experience a similar state of growth.
Once the states formed a single German nation, large amounts of government resources from the western part of the country were invested into the old East Germany in hopes of spurring economic growth rates. Two decades later, the eastern economy is still lagging behind in unemployment rates, production of goods and services, and overall growth. Regardless, Germany has gained a strong presence in the world economic stage. Germany was a founding member of the European Community in 1957, which became the European Union (EU) in 1993. It is part of the Schengen Area, and has been a member of the eurozone since 1999. Germany is a great power in regional and global affairs, and is a member of the United Nations (UN), NATO, the G8, the G20, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and the Council of Europe.
Germany is the second-largest exporter and third-largest importer of goods in the world, therefore holds a very open policy of international trading. It holds a very high standard of living, featuring comprehensive social security that includes the world's oldest universal health care system. Germany has a GDP of 3.4 trillion US dollars and has the world’s fifth largest economy. It maintains an open international trading policy. The county has a trade to GDP ratio of 95.0. Imports are 9.5 percent agriculture, 19.7 percent fuel and mining products, and 68.8 percent manufactures. Exports are 6.5 percent agricultural, 6.1 percent fuels and mining, and 85.1 percent manufactures. Germany imports 56 percent and exports 56.2 percent of its goods with other EU nations. Due to the EU trade agreements, Germany does not exercise high tariffs or strict quotas on imports. According to the CIA World Factbook, in 2012 Germany had a slight surplus and in recent years has been operating under small budget deficits.
Germany’s Liberal International Financial Operations
Germany is an advocate of closer European economic and political integration. Its commercial policies are increasingly determined by agreements among EU members and by EU legislation. January 2002 marked the start of the new EU currency, the eruo. Germany, as a matter of fact,...