Germany has a welcoming attitude towards foreign direct investment (FDI). The German market is open for investment in practically all industry sectors. German law makes no distinction between Germans and foreign nationals regarding investments or the establishment of companies. The legal framework for FDI in Germany favors the principle of freedom of foreign trade and payment. Germany has secured its reputation as a leading investment location worldwide. Moving up to fifth place overall and first in Europe, Germany’s attractiveness as a business location was recognized in a survey of top managers worldwide. Germany has stable its economic policy and has strong management of the economic crisis, foreign investors rated Germany five spots higher. Germany’s strong position was in large part due to its ranking amongst European companies. Along with its relative economic stability, Germany is also the largest domestic market within Europe, creating a large and stable customer base for investors. As a buffer against risk, companies are also currently favoring near-shore investments, according to the study. Germany’s economy relies on a stable industrial base and diverse industrial composition. One reason for Germany’s rise in this year’s rankings is its lack of dependence on the financial sector, which caused other countries to drop significantly. Despite several reduced or postponed investment projects, Germany remains attractive to investors. Every year more and more companies discover Germany as a secure and rewarding investment location. In the last five years, Germany's FDI stocks increased by a total of 47% to reach approximately EUR 503 billion in 2009. More than 45,000 foreign companies are already operating in Germany, employing around three million people.
Since the beginning of the 1990s, the German economy’s international capital links have increased sharply. While German outward FDI stocks have risen...