Germany is one of the world's leading industrial nations. It offers a large market, a central location in Europe and a high level of innovation. Do you need more reasons to invest in Germany?
With 82 million inhabitants, Germany is the European Union's most populous country and therefore also the largest market within the EU. With a gross domestic product of more than 2.2 trillion Euro, Germany is the largest economy in Europe and the third strongest economy in the world.
Germany's central location in Europe makes it a hub for goods and services. Germany more than other countries benefits from EU enlargement. As a result, it is the only country among the seven most important industrialized nations to increase its share of world trade since 1995.
Germany is an open market and warmly welcomes foreign investors. That is demonstrated by the 22,000 foreign enterprises that have established businesses in Germany and now employ more than 2.7 million people. The German market is open to entrepreneurial investment in practically all areas. There are no longer any state-controlled industries. Germany is receiving increasing attention from private equity firms and hedge funds due to its highly attractive companies legislation and favourable investment conditions.
More than 7 million foreigners live in Germany. Several metropolitan regions have prominent foreign communities with their own schools, churches, shops and restaurants. For example, a large number of Japanese live in the Düsseldorf region, Frankfurt is home to many Koreans and there is a thriving Chinese community in Hamburg. Approximately 70% of German blue- and white-collar workers can speak more than one language.
Germany offers an exceptionally well-qualified, motivated and conscientious workforce. German employees' high standard of knowledge and skills is internationally recognized. The demand for professionals is met by 383 institutions of higher education. Another pillar of the German training system is the "dual system" of vocational education, which combines workplace training and school instruction and produces an acknowledged high standard of training closely geared to the needs of industry.
Statistically, Germany has 277 international patents per one million inhabitants - more than anywhere else in the world. The close cooperation between industry and world-famous research institutions like the Max Planck and Fraunhofer Institutes, swiftly transforms new ideas into products for the world market.
Germany has a closely knit network of roads, railways and international airports. This guarantees swift connections. Frankfurt Airport is renowned as an international hub, whilst the Port of Hamburg is one of the largest container transshipment centres in Europe. Communications infrastructure is exceptionally well-developed throughout the country.
Germany is a modern constitutional state with transparent and reasonable laws, the advantages of which are internationally recognized. The German legal system has served as a model for legal systems in many other countries and international studies have shown that German legal security is highly regarded by investors. Out of all countries, Germany ranks fourth in terms of legal security.
The German economy is characterized by privately owned small to medium-sized enterprises, the Mittelstand, or SMEs. 85% of all businesses are SMEs. This makes German industry very flexible, multifaceted and competitive. Many of these highly specialized firms are international market leaders in their field, the so-called "hidden champions".
Products with the "Made in Germany" seal stand for the highest quality worldwide. This has played no small part in maintaining Germany's position as a world champion exporter for many years. The automobile, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and chemical sectors are particularly strong. Industries of the future, such as environmentally friendly energy production and nanotechnology, in which the number of patent applications is doubling every two years, are steadily gaining in importance. All of this means that foreign investors can reap the benefits from the "Made in Germany" seal of quality.