Germany at a Glance

The Federal Republic of Germany lies in the heart of Europe and is a cosmopolitan, democratic country with a great tradition and a lively present. Germany has one of the world’s strongest economies and offers an innovative research and education landscape. At the same time it has a strong creative economy and a dynamic cultural scene. Germany is the European Union’s most populous nation with 82 million inhabitants.

The Country: Located in the Centre of Europe

Germany is surrounded by nine neighbouring countries. Its territory encompasses roughly 357,000 square kilometres. It stretches from the North Sea and the Baltic Sea in the north to the Alps in the south. Some of the largest European rivers – the Rhine, the Danube and the Elbe – flow through Germany. German landscapes are extraordinarily varied and attractive: low and high mountain ranges, extensive lakelands, forests and roughly 2,390 kilometres of coastline.

History: Endings and New Beginning

Historical schisms mark Germany’s path towards constitutional democracy and a functioning parliamentary system: they include the failure of the March Revolution (1848) and the Weimar Republic (1919–1933), but, above all, the upheaval of National Socialism, Holocaust and the Second World War (1933–1945). One of the consequences of the Second World War was the division of Germany into the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic (GDR). The peaceful revolution by the people of the GDR only brought down the Wall in 1989. The Two Plus Four Treaty with the victorious powers of the Second World War cleared the path for German reunification on 3 October 1990.

Politics: Democratic Partner in the World

Since 1949 the Federal Republic of Germany has been a democratic parliamentary federation consisting of 16 Länder (states), each with its own constitution, parliament and government. The highest government authority lies with the federation. In addition to the German Bundestag (federal parliament), the Bundesrat (federal council) of delegates from Länder governments also participates in the legislative process at the federal level. The Basic Law forms the legal and political foundation of government. It binds legislation to the constitutional order. Special significance is attached to the basic rights anchored in the Basic Law. Germany supports peace, democracy and human rights as well as environmental and climate protection worldwide in cooperation with its European and transatlantic partners. Germany is a member of important European and other international organizations. The Federal Republic of Germany is a founding member state of the European Union (EU) and has been a full member of the United Nations (UN) since 1973. The German Bundeswehr (armed forces) is engaged in foreign missions that are mandated by the UN and conducted by NATO and the EU.

Economy: Strong Competitor in the World Market

Germany has the largest economy in the European Union and the fourth largest in the world. Germany is the world’s second strongest exporting nation. German companies enjoy an excellent international reputation. They stand for the “Made in Germany” seal of quality, for innovation, quality and advanced technology. In addition to well-known global players, Germany’s industry-driven economy is also characterized by many world market leaders from the small and medium-sized business sector. Important industries include vehicle manufacturing, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, chemicals, environmental technology and nanotechnology. Germany is an attractive location for foreign investors. The world’s 500 largest are represented in the country, alongside some 45,000 foreign businesses.

Science and Scholarship: Innovative Education and Research Landscape

Germany is a “land of ideas”. Great significance is attached to education and learning as well as research and development. There are some 370 institutions of higher education in Germany, which is the world’s most attractive country for international students after the USA and the UK. Among European countries, Germany ranks first when it comes to patent registrations and is one of the world’s three most innovative countries alongside Japan and the USA. A total of 68 of the 80 German Nobel laureates received the prestigious prize for achievements in the natural sciences. Organizations of extra-university research, such as the Max Planck Society, Fraunhofer Society, Leibniz Community and Helmholtz Association with their hundreds of institutes, provide ideal working conditions for researchers and are internationally renowned.

Society: Lively Diversity

Germany has 82 million inhabitants. They include roughly 15 million with a migrant background, some 7 million of whom are foreigners, while 8 million hold German citizenship. German society is marked by a pluralism of lifestyles and a diversity of ethnic and cultural outlooks. Despite changes in society, the family remains the most important social reference group. Most people have good vocation training, a high standard of living in international terms and adequate scope for shaping their own personal lives.

Culture and Language: Rich Tradition and Creative Present

Germany is the country of Goethe, Schiller and Thomas Mann, Bach, Wagner and Beethoven. Culture traditionally has a high standing and has many facets: Germany has some 300 theatres and 130 professional orchestras as well as 630 art museums with many internationally renowned collections. With some 94,000 new books and re-issues published every year, Germany can also be counted among the great book nations. Its young contemporary painting is internationally sought-after and German cinema is also celebrating new successes in many countries around the world. Some 120 million people speak German as their native language and it is the most widely spoken mother tongue in the European Union. Approximately 17 million people worldwide are currently learning German as a foreign language in courses at institutions.

Savoir Vivre: High Quality of Life

Germany is a modern and open-minded country with high quality of life, influenced in many ways by multinational diversity. Germany offers a great deal of savoir vivre and everyday culture: German cuisine is regionally diverse and produces the highest number of three-star restaurants after France. The winegrowers of the 13 winegrowing regions rely on high quality products and German Riesling is internationally successful. Germany is also popular as a tourist destination – also among numerous visitors from abroad. Tourist attractions in Germany include not only the capital city Berlin and other cultural and historical centres, but also ambitious concert series, festivals and major sporting events. Germany boasts 14 national parks, 101 nature parks and 15 biosphere reserves. Fashion and design are highly regarded and members of Germany’s creative professions are as successful internationally as German architects, many of whom have specialized in the design of sustainable buildings.


Ghana Info >

Members Login
Newsletter Signup
Advertise with Us

Would You like to advertise with Us?