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From Denver 1997 to Birmingham 1998
Country Report


~ Germany Contents ~ Country Objectives ~
Political Data
Head of government: Federal Chancellor Since 1982 Helmut Kohl.
Federal Minister of Chancellery: Friedrich Bohl
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Vice-Chancellor: Klaus Kinkel
Foreign Affairs Adviser of Chancellery: Joachim Bitterlich

Federal Minister of Justice : Dr. Edzard Schmidt-Jortzig
Federal Minister of Defense : Volker Rühe

Minister of Finance: Dr. Theodor Waigel
Federal Minister of the Economy: Dr. Günter Rexrodt
Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development: Carl-Dieter Spranger

Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs: Dr. Norbert Blüm
Bundesbank President: Hans Tietmeyer

Federal Minister of Environment, Protection of Nature and Reactor Safety: Dr. Angela Merkel
Science and Technology Minster: Jürgen Rütgers
Federal Minister of Food, Agriculture and Forestry : Jochen Borchert

Sherpa: Jürgen Stark


TYPE: democratic, federal, multi-party republic with representatives chosen directly by the people.
Incumbent government: a coalition of CDU, CSU and FDP.


Upper House: Bundesrat consists of 68 members of the 16 state governments or their representatives.
Lower House: Bundestag comprised of 672 members, of which:
244 Christian Democratic Union (CDU)
252 Social Democratic Party (SPD)
50 Christian Social Union (CSU)
49 Alliance 90/Greens
47 Free Democratic Party (FDP)
30 Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS).

National Elections: Held every four years; eligible voters: German citizens 18 years or older.
Most recent elections: October 16, 1994, voter turnout: 79%
Next Elections: September 27, 1998

Economic Data
GDP: (1996) DM 3,541.3 bln (1997) DM 3646.0 bln
Source: IMF
GDP per capita: approximately 30 000 US$
Economic growth rate: (3 months*) +1.1% change at annual rate
(1 year/1997 4th quarter) +2.4% change at annual rate
The Economist's Forecasts: (1998) +2.6; (1999) +2.7
Source: The Economist
Consumer Price Inflation: (3 months*) +0.9% change at annual rate
(1 year/Mar. 1998) +1.1% change at annual rate
Source: The Economist
*Average of latest 3 months compared with average of previous 3 months, at annual rate
Unemployment rate: (Mar. 1998) 11.5%
Source: The Economist
Interest Rate: Banks prime (22 April 1998): 4.95% per annum
Exchange Rate: [Deutsche Mark per US dollar / Market Rate - Period Average]
(1996) 1.5048 (1997) 1.7341
(Jan. 1998) 1.8167 (Feb. 1998) 1.8142
Source: IMF
(22 April 1998 - The Economist) 1.79
Current Account:
(latest 12 months)
(Feb. 1998) - 1.3 US$ bln
Source: The Economist
Foreign Aid: 0.31 (ODA % of GNP) - 3rd among G7 countries
World Ranking: 3rd
Major trading partners: Export to: France, UK, USA, Italy
Import from: France, Italy, USA, UK
3 major exports: motor vehicles, machinery, chemical and electrical engineering products

Prepared by Danielle Kotras, Maja Nazaruk, and Lorna Schmidt, University of Toronto G8 Research Group, May 1998.

~ Germany Contents ~ Country Objectives ~

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