International Business Opportunities in Germany

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Executive Summary

This paper examines the opportunity for international business in Germany. It reviews Germany's history, demographics, political and economic structure in regards to how they support or do not support an environment that nurtures international business opportunities. Additionally a review of Germany's attitude towards foreign direct investment, its participation as a member of the World Trade Organization as well as economic conditions such as stability of its currency, gross national product, balance of trade, national budget, inflation and level of foreign debt was completed. Collectively, these factors led to gauging the level of opportunity for international business in Germany as favorable; its government and industry encourage foreign direct investment and have eased, if not eliminated, much of the red-tape that can be associated with foreign direct investment. Free movement of capital between the U.S. and Germany and over 3000 incentive programs offered by federal and state authorities to U.S. investors lend additional support to this conclusion. Industry sectors offering opportunity for international business in Germany include computer software, management consulting services, drug & pharmaceuticals, and telecommunication equipment. Potential success in these sectors can be derived from the availability of a highly skilled and productive worker force, currency stability, political stability, absence of corruption and Germany's prime location in the heart of Europe.

Introduction: Gauging the International Business Climate in Germany I.Review of Key Data
1.Early History
2.Germany Today
C.Population Demographics
1.Education Levels
2.Religious Beliefs
3. Political Conditions
D.Cultural Factors
2.Decision Making Styles
3. Working Practices
II.Support of International Business Initiatives
A.Economic Integration & Foreign Direct Investment
1.Driving Force
2.Legislation and Incentives
C.World Trade Organization Membership
1.Inaugural Member
2.Recent Activities
III. Economic Environment
B.Gross National Product
C.Balance of Trade
D.Level of Inflation
E.Foreign Debt Obligations
Conclusion: Identification of Business Opportunities Supported by Germany's International Business Environment
International Business opportunities in Germany

To identify and gain an understanding of the environment for international business in Germany, several factors will be reviewed. A country's history, geography, culture, population demographics as well as political and economic structure can all play a role in either contributing to or working against the existence of a climate favorable to international business. By examining issues such as Germany's participation in area economic integration, its attitude toward foreign direct investment and its participation in the World Trade Organization, a favorable or unfavorable environment towards international business can be identified. Once the climate has been identified as favorable to international business, a second tier of review is conducted to identify those areas of business which present the best opportunity for success and the factors supporting their success. Germany's History

Germany is believed to have been inhabited as early as the second century, first by the Celts followed by various German tribes. One of the tribes, the Franks, ruled Germany until the fourteenth century when rule came under the jurisdiction of the Holy Roman Empire. The Thirty Years' War from 1618-1648 devastated Germany and broke it into hundreds of small principalities independent of the emperor. The Federal Republic of Germany has been influenced over the years by many historical events, including World War I and II, the Weimar...
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