Germany 1998Germany

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Germany - Introduction 1998
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Background: Germany_first united in 1871_suffered defeats in successive world wars and was occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the beginning of the Cold War and increasing tension between the US and Soviet Union, two German states were formed in 1949:the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The newly democratic FRG embedded itself in key Western economic and security organizations, the EU and NATO, while the Communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the Soviet Union and end of the Cold War cleared the path for the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and German re-unification in 1990. Germany has expended considerable funds; roughly $100 billion a year; in subsequent years working to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards, with mixed results. Unemployment which in the east is nearly double that in the west; has grown over the last several years, primarily as a result of structural problems like an inflexible labor market.

Germany - Geography 1998
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Location: Central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark

Geographic coordinates: 51 00 N, 9 00 E

Map referenceEurope

Total: 356,910 km²
Land: 349,520 km²
Water: 7,390 km²
Note: includes the formerly separate Federal Republic of Germany, the German Democratic Republic, and Berlin, following formal unification on 3 October 1990
Comparative: slightly smaller than Montana

Land boundaries
Total: 3,621 km
Border countries: (9) Austria 784 km; , Belgium 167 km; , Czech Republic 646 km; , Denmark 68 km; , France 451 km; , Luxembourg 138 km; , Netherlands 577 km; , Poland 456 km; , Switzerland 334 km

Coastline: 2,389 km

Maritime claims
Continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: temperate and marine; cool, cloudy, wet winters and summers; occasional warm, tropical foehn wind; high relative humidity

Terrain: lowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in south

Extremes lowest point: Freepsum Lake -2 m
Extremes highest point: Zugspitze 2,962 m

Natural resources: iron ore, coal, potash, timber, lignite, uranium, copper, natural gas, salt, nickel
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 33%
Permanent crops: 1%
Permanent pastures: 15%
Forests and woodland: 31%
Other: 20% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 4,750 km² (1993 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: NA

Note: strategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea

Germany - People 1998
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Population: 82,079,454 (July 1998 est.)
Growth rate: 0.02% (1998 est.)

Noun: German(s)
Adjective: German

Ethnic groups: German 91.5%, Turkish 2.4%, Italians 0.7%, Greeks 0.4%, Poles 0.4%, other 4.6% (made up largely of people fleeing the war in the former Yugoslavia)

Languages: German

Religions: Protestant 38%, Roman Catholic 34%, Muslim 1.7%, unaffiliated or other 26.3%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 16% (male 6,570,582; female 6,240,671)
15-64 years: 68% (male 28,688,052; female 27,532,099)
65 years and over: 16% (male 4,866,122; female 8,181,928) (July 1998 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 0.02% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 8.84 births/1000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 10.77 deaths/1000 population (1998 est.)

Net migration rate: 2.08 migrant(s)/1000 population (1998 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: emissions from coal-burning utilities and industries and lead emissions from vehicle exhausts (the result of continued use of leaded fuels) contribute to air pollution; acid rain, resulting from sulfur dioxide emissions, is damaging forests; heavy pollution in the Baltic Sea from raw sewage and industrial effluents from rivers in eastern Germany; hazardous waste disposal
International agreements party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
International agreements signed but not ratified: Air Pollution-Sulphur 94

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.59 male(s)/female (1998 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 5.2 deaths/1000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 76.99 years
Male: 73.83 years
Female: 80.33 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.25 children born/woman (1998 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 99% (1977 est.)
Male: NA%
Female: NA%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Germany - Government 1998
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Country name
Conventional long form: Federal Republic of Germany
Conventional short form: Germany
Local long form: Bundesrepublik Deutschland
Local short form: Deutschland

Government type: federal republic

Capital: Berlin
Note: the shift from Bonn to Berlin will take place over a period of years, with Bonn retaining many administrative functions and several ministries even after parliament moves in 1999

Administrative divisions: 16 states (laender, singular_land; Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bayern, Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hessen, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Niedersachsen, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt, Schleswig-Holstein, Thueringen

Dependent areas

Independence: 18 January 1871 (German Empire unification; divided into four zones of occupation (UK, US, USSR, and later, France) in 1945 following World War II; Federal Republic of Germany (FRG or West Germany) proclaimed 23 May 1949 and included the former UK, US, and French zones; German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany) proclaimed 7 October 1949 and included the former USSR zone; unification of West Germany and East Germany took place 3 October 1990; all four power rights formally relinquished 15 March 1991

National holiday: German Unity Day (Day of Unity), 3 October (1990)

Constitution: 23 May 1949, known as Basic Law; became constitution of the united German people 3 October 1990

Legal system: civil law system with indigenous concepts; judicial review of legislative acts in the Federal Constitutional Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Roman HERZOG (since 1 July 1994): ead of
Government: Chancellor Dr. Helmut KOHL (since 4 October 1982)
Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president upon the proposal of the chancellor
Elections: president elected by the Federal Convention including members of the Federal Assembly and an equal number of members elected by the Land Parliaments for a five-year term; election last held 23 May 1994 (next to be held NA 1999); chancellor elected by an absolute majority of the Federal Assembly for a four-year term; election last held 16 October 1994 (next to be held 27 September 1998)
Election results: Roman HERZOG elected president; percent of Federal Convention vote - NA; Dr. Helmut KOHL reelected chancellor; percent of Federal Assembly_NA

Legislative branch: bicameral chamber (no official name for the two chambers as a whole) consists of the Federal Assembly or Bundestag (656 seats usually, but 672 for the 1994 term; elected by direct popular vote under a system combining direct and proportional representation; a party must win 5% of the national vote or three direct mandates to gain representation; members serve four-year terms) and the Federal Council or Bundesrat (68 votes; state governments are directly represented by votes; each has 3 to 6 votes depending on population and are required to vote as a block; term is not fixed)
Elections: Federal Assembly_last held 16 October 1994 (next to be held by 27 September 1998); Federal Council_last held NA (next to be held NA)
Election results: Federal Assembly_percent of vote by party_CDU 34.2%, SPD 36.4%, Alliance 90/Greens 7.3%, CSU 7.3%, FDP 6.9%, PDS 4.4%, Republicans 1.9%; seats by party_CDU 244, SPD 252, Alliance 90/Greens 49, CSU 50, FDP 47, PDS 30; note_one Greens member defected to the CDU making the seat count CDU 245, Alliance 90/Greens 48; Federal Council_current composition_votes by party - SPD-led states 41, CDU-led states 27

Judicial branch: Federal Constitutional Court or Bundesverfassungsgericht, half the judges are elected by the Bundestag and half by the Bundesrat

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: AfDB, AG (observer), AsDB, Australia Group, BDEAC, BIS, CBSS, CCC, CDB (non-regional), CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECE, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, G- 5, G- 7, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINUGUA, MTCR, NAM (guest), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNITAR, UNMIBH, UNOMIG, UPU, WEU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO, ZC

Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador Juergen CHROBOG
In the us chancery: 4,645 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20,007
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 298-4,000
In the us fax: [1] (202) 298-4,249
In the us consulates general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco, Seattle
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador John C. KORNBLUM
From the us embassy: Deichmanns Aue 29, 53,170 Bonn
From the us mailing address: APO AE 9,080, PSC 117, Bonn
From the us telephone: [49] (228) 3,391
From the us fax: [49] (228) 339-2,663
From the us branch office: Berlin
From the us consulates general: Dusseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Leipzig, Munich

Flag descriptionflag of Germany: three equal horizontal bands of black (top), red, and gold

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Germany - Economy 1998
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Economy overview: In 1997 the German economy, the world's third most powerful, benefited from robust exports, particularly to other members of the EU and the US, as well as strengthening equipment investment. But anemic private consumption and a contraction in the construction industry limited the expansion. Unemployment continued to set post-war monthly records through the end of 1997 and averaged 4.3 million for the year. In preparation for the 1 January 1999 start of the European Monetary Union, the government has made major efforts in 1996-97 to reduce the fiscal deficit. This effort has been complicated by growing unemployment, an erosion of the tax base, and the continuing transfer of roughly $100 billion a year to eastern Germany to refurbish this ex-communist area. In recent years business and political leaders have become increasingly concerned about Germany's decline in attractiveness as an investment target. They cite increasing preference by German companies to locate new manufacturing facilities in foreign countries, including the US, rather than in Germany, to be closer to the markets and to avoid Germany's high tax rates, high wage costs, rigid labor structures, and extensive regulations. For similar reasons foreign investment in Germany has been lagging in recent years.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 2.4% (western 2.5%, eastern 1.7%) (1997 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin
Agriculture: 1.1%
Industry: 34.5%
Services: 64.4% (1995)

Agriculture products: western:potatoes, wheat, barley, sugar beets, fruit, cabbage; cattle, pigs, poultry; eastern:wheat, rye, barley, potatoes, sugar beets, fruit; pork, beef, chicken, milk, hides

Industries: western:among world's largest and technologically advanced producers of iron, steel, coal, cement, chemicals, machinery, vehicles, machine tools, electronics, food and beverages; eastern:metal fabrication, chemicals, brown coal, shipbuilding, machine building, food and beverages, textiles, petroleum refining

Industrial production growth rate: 3% (1997)

Labor force
Total: 38.7 million
By occupation industry: 41%
By occupation agriculture: 3%
By occupation services: 56% (1995)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 12% (1997 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $755 billion
Expenditures: $832.1 billion, including capital expenditures of $N/A (1995)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: total value:$521.1 billion (f.o.b., 1996)
Commodoties: manufactures 88.2% (including machines and machine tools, chemicals, motor vehicles, iron and steel products), agricultural products 5.0%, raw materials 2.3%, fuels 1.0%, other 3.5% (1995)
Partners: EU 57.7% (France 11.7%, UK 8.1%, Italy 7.6%, Netherlands 7.5%, Belgium-Luxembourg 6.5%, Austria 5.5%), Eastern Europe 8.0%, other West European countries 7.5%, US 7.3%, NICs 5.6%, Japan 2.5%, OPEC 2.2%, China 1.4% (1996 est.)

Imports: total value:$455.7 billion (f.o.b., 1996)
Commodoties: manufactures 74.2%, agricultural products 9.9%, fuels 6.4%, raw materials 5.9%, other 3.6% (1995)
Partners: EU 55.5% (France 10.8%, Netherlands 8.6%, Italy 8.4%, Belgium-Luxembourg 6.6%, UK 6.4%, Austria 3.9%), Eastern Europe 8.7%, other West European countries 7.2%, US 6.8%, Japan 5.3%, NICs 5.3%, China 2.4%, OPEC 1.7%, other 7.1% (1995)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $NA

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: deutsche marks (DM) per US$1: 1.8167 (January 1998), 1.7341 (1997), 1.5048 (1996), 1.4331 (1995), 1.6228 (1994), 1.6533 (1993)

Germany - Energy 1998
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 495.875 billion kWh (1995)

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 6,154 kWh (1995 est.)

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Germany - Communication 1998
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: Germany has one of the world's most technologically advanced telecommunications systems; as a result of intensive capital expenditures since reunification, the formerly backward system of the eastern part of the country is being rapidly modernized and integrated with that of the western part
Domestic: the region which was formerly West Germany is served by an extensive system of automatic telephone exchanges connected by modern networks of fiber-optic cable, coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, and a domestic satellite system; cellular telephone service is widely available and includes roaming service to many foreign countries; since the reunification of Germany, the telephone system of the eastern region has been upgraded and enjoys many of the advantages of the national system
International: satellite earth stations_14 Intelsat (12 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian Ocean), 1 Eutelsat, 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic Ocean region), 2 Intersputnik (1 Atlantic Ocean region and 1 Indian Ocean region); 6 submarine cable connections; 2 HF radiotelephone communication centers; tropospheric scatter links

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Germany - Military 1998
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $42.8 billion (1995)
Percent of gdp: 1.5% (1995)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Germany - Transportation 1998
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 70
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 53
With paved runways under 914 m: 123 (1997 est.)
With unpaved runways total: 299
With unpaved runways over 3047 m: 2
With unpaved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 6
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 6
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 57
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 228 (1997 est.)

Airports with paved runways
15-24 to 2437 m: 70
914 to 1523 m: 53
Under 914 m: 123 (1997 est.)

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 299
Over 3047 m: 2
2438 to 3047 m: 6
15-24 to 2437 m: 6
914 to 1523 m: 57
Under 914 m: 228 (1997 est.)

Heliports: 63 (1997 est.)


Total: 43,966 km
Standard gauge: 43,531 km 1.435-m; 40,355 km are owned by Deutsche Bahn AG (DB); 17,015 km of the DB system are electrified and 16,941 km are double- or more-tracked
Narrow gauge: 389 km 1.000-m gauge (DB operates 146 km of 1.000-m gauge); 7 km 0.900-m gauge; 39 km 0.750-m gauge
Note: in addition to the DB system there are 54 privately-owned industrial or excursion railways, ranging in route length from 2 km to 632 km, with a total length of 3,465 km (1995)


Waterways: western_5,222 km, of which almost 70% are usable by craft of 1,000-metric-ton capacity or larger; major rivers include the Rhine and Elbe; Kiel Canal is an important connection between the Baltic Sea and North Sea; eastern_2,319 km (1988)

Merchant marine

Ports and terminals

Germany - Transnational issues 1998
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Disputes international: individual Sudeten German claims for restitution of property confiscated in connection with their expulsion after World War II

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: source of precursor chemicals for South American cocaine processors; transshipment point for and consumer of Southwest Asian heroin and hashish, Latin American cocaine, and European-produced synthetic drugs

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