Germany is a Federal country located in the Central part of the Western Europe. It is made up of sixteen states and its capital city is Berlin, which is also the largest city in the country. The country covers an area of approximately 137,847 square miles equivalent to 357,021 square kilometers and it is also the seventh largest country in Europe other than being at number sixty two among the largest countries in the world. The climate of this region is temperate seasonal with cold humid weather most of the time. The population of Germany is approximately 82 million and it is among the popular member states represented in the European Union.
The origin of Germany can be traced back during the Iron and bronze ages although as a united country, Germany came into existence in 1871 under the rule of the first Kaiser, Wilhelm, since it was initially comprised of several independent states who shared only a common language. The country has a strong history for participating in both the world wars I and II. The country celebrates its remembrance of becoming a republic on every September ninth as it became a republic on the same day in 1918. Also the country gained its independence on May fifth 1955 and later in 1990, both East and West Germany were united after the Berlin wall was demolished in 1989.
Geographically, Germany lies between the latitudes 470N and 550 North while the longitudes 50E and 160E marks the exact location of the country in the world atlas. The country borders with Denmark on the northern side while Switzerland and Austria borders the eastern side. On the east side lies Czech Republic, the northwest there is the Netherlands while France and Luxembourg borders the Southwest side of the country.
The country’s population structure as of the year 2010 was comprised of 67% working class (ranging between 15 to 64 years) while the children and old people comprise of 15.6% and 17.4% respectively. The country records the lowest percent of the youths and the highest percentage of the elderly in the entire European Union.
Germany is one of the world’s most industrialized countries and it is best known for providing global market with mechanical devices such as vehicles with renowned motor companies such as Audi, Mercedes Benz and BMW among other well-known manufacturing and chemical companies such as Bayer. On top of that, Germany has the most of the best shipment ports in the world and it supplies most of the best mechanical, electronic and chemical supplies all over the world businesses by use of freight containers. In addition, Germany has boasted globally for producing the best engineers who have achieved contracts in most parts of the world with their remarkable expertise. This has helped to sustain the economy of the country and also play an important role in the global economic development.
Germany is among the first countries in Europe with the largest economy. The country has played a major role in strengthening the economic value of the European Union. The country is recognized for its successful small and large scale enterprises, some of which have gained a high economic value globally. The infrastructure and labor force of the Germany economy is tremendously above average. However, the country has limited amount of raw materials whereby the only natural resources available are potash and brown coal (lignite) and hence, most of the raw materials are imported from other countries. Germany’s largest stock exchange is at Frankfurt while only three of the country’s largest companies are located in the capital city Berlin.
The country’s GDP has increased tremendously since 1992 with a slight decrease between the fiscal year 2011 and 2012. In 2011 for instance, the total GDP was recorded at 2592.60 billion pounds (3.601 trillion US Dollars) while in 2012 the recorded GDP was 1974.7 billion pounds marking a decrease rate of 0.9 percent. The changes in Germany GDP for the past five years are as seen in table I below.
Adapted from: DEM (Deutche Mark)
Inflation rate in Germany has shifted with increase and decrease from the year 1990 to 2012 with the latest rate of inflation recorded at 2.1 percent in the fiscal year 2012. The rate of inflation was recorded highest in 1992 at 6.40 percent and lowest in 2009 at -0.4 percent.
The rate of unemployment has shifted seasonally with an increased number of unemployed persons increasing from October 2011 to October 2012. According to the Federal Statistical Office (2002), at least 2.24 million people in German under the working age were unemployed, a tremendous increase by 36,000 equivalent to 1.8 percent increase of people as of the year 2011. The total unemployment rate in the year 2012 was marked at 6.1 percent (Gavin, 2010). On the other hand, the number of employed persons rose by only 0.3 percent.
The life expectancy in Germany is approximated at 80 years as of the year 2010 to current which indicates a possibility of available labor force in the future. However, as a result of low percentage of the youths, there is a possibility of increase in the old age people and low working age persons in the future especially as a result of low birth rate in the country. The level of literacy which is a source of trained labor force has increased with 102 percent school enrolment rate recorded in 2010 (World Bank, 2011). The rate of emigration in Germany has increased whereby people have moved to other countries in search of employment opportunities hence affecting the labor force of the country. The rate of immigration also is high with most of the immigrants are semi or unskilled.
According to the European Union projections, some of the major determinants of economic development are expected to change in the fiscal year 2013. This has a direct impact on the Germany economy since it is a member of EU. For instance, the rate of inflation is expected to decrease by 1.8 percent while the rate of unemployment is expected to increase by 10.3 percent in 2013 and reduce in 2014. The future projections states that Germany economy is expected to remain stable or increase with expected GDP to increase by 1.4 percent in 2022. The reduction of government deficits is expected to reduce by 0.5 percent in 2016 while the number of imported nuclear energy is expected to be fully replaced by renewable energy by 2022.
Despite the aftermath of economic recession, Germany has retained a strong economic power in the world economy as it ranks number four in Europe with the highest nominal GDP (Growth Domestic Product) and the fifth in the list of GDP/PPP (Purchasing power parity). The country has assumed a second position in the world’s largest exporters and in the year 2011, the country exported goods worth over 14.8 trillion dollars. This means that the country is likely to continue being among the leading economic influences in the global economy,
Gavin, M. (September 2010). “Germany Has 1,000 Market-Leading Companies, Manager-Magazine Says”. BusinessWeek (New York).
Hans-Joachim, B. (1990) “The German Economy in the Twentieth Century”, Routledge.
Schulze, H. (1998). Germany: A New History. Harvard University Press.
The world Bank Report. (2011).