Economy of Germany

Germany is the largest national economy in Europe, the fourth-largest by nominal GDP in the world, and fifth by GDP (PPP). Since the age of industrialisation and beyond, the country has been a driver, innovator, and beneficiary of an ever more globalised economy. Germany’s economic policy is based on the concept of the social market economy. The country is a founding member of the European Union and the Eurozone.[16][17] Germany is the third largest exporter in the world with $1.516 trillion exported in 2012.[18][dated info] Exports account for more than one-third of national output.[19][dated info] [20] In 2013, Germany recorded the highest trade surplus in the world worth $270 billion,[21] making it the biggest capital exporter globally.[22] Among the top 10 biggest economies in the world, Germany is the only country with a stable Triple-A (AAA) credit rating.

Germany is the largest producer of lignite in the world. Germany is also rich in timber, iron ore, potash, salt, uranium, nickel, copper and natural gas. Energy in Germany is sourced predominantly by fossil fuels, followed by nuclear power, and by renewable energy like biomass (wood and biofuels), wind, hydro and solar.

The service sector contributes around 70% of the total GDP, industry 29.1%, and agriculture 0.9%. Most of the country’s products are in engineering, especially in automobiles, machinery, metals, and chemical goods.[23] Germany is the leading producer of wind turbines and solar power technology in the world.[24] Combination of service-oriented manufacturing,[25] R&D spending, links between industry and academia, international cooperation and the Mittelstand contribute to the overall competitiveness of the economy of Germany.[26][27]

Germany is the world’s top location for trade fairs. Around two thirds of the world’s leading trade fairs take place in Germany.[28] The largest annual international trade fairs and congresses are held in several German cities such as HanoverMunichFrankfurt and Berlin.

Of the world’s 500 largest stock market listed companies measured by revenue, the Fortune Global 500, 37 are headquartered in Germany. In 2012 the ten largest were VolkswagenAllianzE.ONDaimlerSiemensMetroDeutsche TelekomMunich ReBASF, and BMW.[29] Other large German companies include: Robert BoschThyssenKruppContinental AGMAN and Trumpf (diversified industrials); KUKA (robotics); Bayer and Merck (pharmaceuticals); Adidas and Puma (clothing and footwear); Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank (banking and finance); Deutsche Bahn (rail transport); AldiLidl, and Edeka (retail); SAP (computer software); Infineon (semiconductors); Henkel (household and personal consumer products); Deutsche Post (logistics); Bertelsmann (mass media); and Hugo Boss (luxury goods). Well-known global brands are Mercedes BenzBMWAdidasAudiPorscheVolkswagenBayerBASFBoschSiemensLufthansaSAP and Nivea.[30]

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