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Ocean Star

on 16 April 2014

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Transcript of GERMANY

The country has a strategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea.

The government system is a federal republic democratic .

The chief of state is the President and the head of government is the Chancellor.
Germany has a
mixed economic system

The economy includes a variety of private freedom, combined with centralized economic planning and government regulation.

Germany is a member of the European Union (EU).
GERMANY is Europe's
most industrialized and populous country,

Famed for its technological achievements,

Germany has produced some of Europe's most celebrated composers, philosophers and poets:

Jonhan Sebastian Bach

Mozart Beethoven Schubert

Schumann Franz Chopin

Handel Gluck Haydn

Mendelssohn Richard Wagner


GERMANY achieved national unity in 1871, much later than other European nations,
but quickly caught up economically and militarily.

However, the World War I and II defeats, left the country shattered facing the difficult legacy of Nazism, and divided between
Europe's Cold War blocs
In 1989, the wall dividing Germany was removed.

The end of the Cold War, reunited the two parts of the country although the economy of the former EAST continues to lag behind that of the former WEST.

is a country located in the heart of Western Europe.

It is bordered by
Denmark, Poland, Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland, France,
Luxembourg, Belgium, Netherlands,
the North Sea, and the Baltic Sea.
Geography ● Topography ● Timezones
Germany total area is 357,027 sq.km, land 348,672 sq.km, (137,849 sq miles) water 8,350 km, coastline 2.389km. Germany it is about the size of Montana. Area: 357,027
Located in central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark.
Climate - Temperate

Temperature cooler, cloudy
and rainier than of
the United States.

Winters and Summer
are wet with occasional
warmt mountain wind (foehn)
The Celts are believed to have been the first inhabitants of Germany.

They were followed by German tribes at the end of the 2nd century B.C. German invasions destroyed the declining Roman Empire in the 4th and 5th centuries A.D.

One of the tribes, the Franks, attained supremacy in Western Europe under Charlemagne, who was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 800.
Today Germany is the European Union's most populous nation.

Germany as a unified nation is much newer than most of its European neighbors.

The German Empire (das Kaiserreich, das deutsche Reich) reached its zenith under Kaiser Wilhelm II just prior to the start of World War I (der Erste Weltkrieg) in 1914.

After the "War to end all wars" Germany attempted to become a democratic republic, but the Weimar Republic proved to be only a short-lived prelude to the rise of Hitler and the dictatorial "Third Reich" of the Nazis.
Federal Republic with a Parliamentary Democracy
Imports- $937 billion: food, petroleum products, manufactured goods, electrical products, motor vehicles, apparel. Major suppliers Netherlands, China, France.
Products: corn, wheat, potatoes, sugar, beets, barley, hops, viticulture, forestry, fisheries.

Types: car-making; mechanical, electrical, and precision engineering; chemicals; environmental technology; optics; medical technology; biotech and genetic engineering; nanotechnology; aerospace; logistics.
Currency: Euro
US$ 1.00 = € 0.74
The European Union (EU) gave Germany until 2013 to get its consolidated budget deficit below 3% of GDP, and the government’s 4-year fiscal consolidation program worth approximately €80 billion (U.S. $109.6 billion) is intended to meet deficit targets. Germany’s deficit decreased from 3.3% of GDP in 2010 to 2.0% of GDP (est.) in 2011 thanks to the strong economy and low unemployment.

In May 2011, Chancellor Merkel announced Germany’s plan to phase out nuclear energy power by 2022. It is expected that this policy will further accelerate the growth of the renewable energies sector.
In 2011, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 2.7%.
The country’s export-dependent economy is growing more quickly than the euro-zone average. In 2010, GDP grew by 3.6%, and the German economy experienced its strongest rate of growth since reunification.

Domestic demand is becoming a more prominent driver of growth. The German labor market also showed a strong performance in 2010 and 2011, with the unemployment rate dropping to 5.5% in 2011 due to structural reforms implemented under the government of former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and other government work programs.

The German economy so far has been largely unaffected by the sovereign debt crisis in the euro-zone, but a recession and slowdown of Europe’s largest economy occurred in 2011 and 2012, mostly because of declining exports of other European partners.
Life Expectancy at Birth
indicates the number of years a newborn infant would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life
Demographic Information
German 91.5%
Turkish 2.4%
Italian 0.7%
Greek 0.4%
Polish 0.4%
Other 4.6%
• GDP per capita: $44,525.
(World Bank, 2009)

• GNI per capita: US $43,110
(World Bank, 2010)

Ethnicity and Race
Trade (2009)
(0.9% of GDP in 2010)
(0.9% of GDP in 2010)

Check out

these useful resources that will help you prepare your trip: Visa requirements, budget tips, advice on when to go and what to see.

If you are a US citizen and don’t want to stay longer than 90 days, then you don’t need a visa, only a valid US passport.

When to go
Depends on you - do you love warm, sunny days and don't mind long lines in front of sights and attractions? Or can you cope with cold temperatures in order to be rewarded with low airfares and fewer crowds? Check out the overview of Germany in all four seasons, compare flights, and find out what’s the best time of year for you to visit Germany.

Where to go
There is a lot to see and do, and deciding on a destination can seem a bit overwhelming. Prepare ahead: cities, regions, and sights that will help you find the perfect destination for your Germany trip.

Things to know before you go
10 words to learn
The Capital Berlin

exchange your dollars for Euro: prior your departure in a local bank or get it at the arrival airport in Germany at a currency conversion table but most are not open 24/7, also use ATM most banks accept, not all. You will be charged fees from 2 to 4 dollars. Be prepared take Euro cash always.

Credit cards
are accepted but not all. VISA is accepted in most gas stations but only a few restaurants. Some American based companies/restaurants take U.S. Dollars, for example, all McDonalds in Germany take American Dollars. If you plan well and spend your money wisely Germany will prove to be a GREAT vacation experience.

Major language is German: 82.7 million
enriched from many different dialects.

German is officially spoken by an estimated 126 million people in seven countries:
German is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union.

Federal Republic of Germany
Germany is made up of the lowlands North German Plain; the Central German Uplands and the Bavarian Alps Southern German Highlands.

The Zugspitze Mountains with 9,721 ft (2,962 m) is the highest point in the country.

Germany's major rivers are the Danube, the Elbe, the Oder, the Weser, and the Rhine.
Chief of State
: President Joachim Gauck
Head of Governent
: Chancellor Angela Merkel
, the chancellor (prime minister) heads the executive branch of the federal government.
The chancellor exercises executive power. The
(lower, principal chamber of the parliament) elects the chancellor.

The president (chief of state) duties are largely ceremonial; He normally is elected every 5 years by the Federal Assembly.

This Assembly is a body convoked only for this purpose, comprising the entire
and an equal number of state delegates.
serves a 4-year term, consists of at least twice the number of electoral districts in the country (299).

When parties' directly elected seats exceed their proportional representation, they may receive additional seats. The number of seats in the Bundestag was reduced to 598 for the 2002 elections.

chamber or Federal Council) consists of 69 members who are delegates of the 16 Laender (states).

The legislature has powers of exclusive jurisdiction and concurrent jurisdiction with the Laender in areas specified in the Basic Law.

has primary legislative authority. The
must concur on legislation concerning revenue shared by federal and state governments and those imposing responsibilities on the states.
Germany has an independent federal judiciary consisting of a constitutional court, a high court of justice, and courts with jurisdiction in administrative, financial, labor, and social matters.

The highest court of the land is the
Federal Constitutional Court
), which ensures a uniform interpretation of constitutional provisions and protects the fundamental rights of the individual citizen as defined in the Basic Law.There are lower federal and state courts.

Germany's Constitution
Federal Republic of Germany
Political Infrastructure Executive
Political Infrastructure Parliament Legislative
Federal Constitutional Court
Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU)
Social Democratic Party (SPD)
Free Democratic Party (FDP)
The Left (PDS/WASG/Communist)
Other Parties
Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU)
Postwar German politics emerged with a moderate, ecumenical Christian party: the
Christian Democratic Union (CDU)
- operating in alliance with a related Bavarian party: the Christian Social Union (CSU). Each party maintains its own structure.
The CDU/CSU has adherents among Catholics, Protestants, rural interests, and members of all economic classes. It is generally conservative on economic and social policy and more identified with the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches.
Angela Merkel, Germany’s current Chancellor, is the leader of the CDU and Horst Seehofer leads the
Christian Social Union
. The CDU/CSU currently holds 237 seats in the Bundestag.

Social Democratic Party (SPD)
SPD is the oldest organized political parties in the world. It originally advocated Marxist principles, but in the 1959 Godesberg Program abandoned the concept of a "class party" while continuing to stress social welfare programs. The SPD has a powerful base in the bigger cities and industrialized states. Currently, 146 seats in the Bundestag are held by the SPD.
Free Democratic Party (FDP)
The FDP has traditionally been composed mainly of middle and upper class Protestants who consider themselves heirs to the European liberal tradition. It supports free trade and reducing the role of the state in economic policy. It is libertarian on social issues.
The Left
Other Parties
The party has participated in all but three postwar federal governments but was in opposition from 1998-2009. After its strong showing in the September 2009 elections, the FDP, under Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle's leadership, joined with the CDU/CSU to form the current government coalition. The FDP currently holds 93 seats in the Bundestag.
Political Parties
The PDS (composed largely of former East German Communists) and the WASG (composed of western leftists) merged in June 2007 to form a party now called "The Left".

The party's foreign policy is largely shaped by its rigid opposition to foreign military deployments.
On domestic policy, the party opposes economic and social reforms, such as Hartz IV, which aim to increase free markets and reduce unemployment benefits.
The Left party proposes to replace the free market system with a return to socialist principles. The Left hold 76 seats in the Bundestag.
There are more parties due to the political instability caused by the need for multi-party coalitions in the Weimar Republic.
Germany's Basic Law today requires that parties reach 5% of the vote to win seats in the Bundestag.
The Pirate Party began in Germany in 2007 and focuses on data privacy issues with a largely young membership. It drew 2% of the vote in the 2009 national election. In September 2011 elections, the Pirate Party won enough votes to enter the Berlin state parliament with 15 seats, the first time it has entered a state parliament. The extreme right-wing National Democratic Party (NPD) is currently represented in two state parliaments in Germany.

European Union
The German economy is the European largest and the fifth in the world. Leader exporter of machinery, vehicles, chemicals, and household equipment and benefits from a highly skilled labor force. Like its Western European neighbors, Germany faces significant demographic challenges to sustained long-term growth.
Low fertility rates and declining net immigration are increasing pressure on the country's social welfare system and have compelled the government to undertake structural reforms. The modernization and integration of the eastern German economy--where unemployment can exceed 20% in some municipalities- continues to be a costly and long-term process, with total transfers from west to east amounting to roughly $3 trillion so far.
Exports- $1.124 trillion: chemicals, motor vehicles, iron and steel products, manufactured goods, electrical machinery products. Major markets (2009) France, Netherlands, U.S.
CIA World Factbook (March 2012)
U.S. Dept. of State Country Background Notes ( March 2012)

Internet Domain: .de

International Dialing Code: +49

Population 82.1 million (UN, 2011)

Population Growth rate -0.053%

Life Expectancy:
78 years (men)
83 years (women)

Health: Infant mortality rate (2010) -
3.99/ 1,000

(UN, 2010)

The Basic Law (das Grundgesetz) was promulgated on May 23, 1949,
after the II World War.

Later, on October 3, 1990,
the Federal Republic of Germany and
the German Democratic Republic reunified in accordance with Article 23 of the F.R.G. Basic Law Germany's constitution

(now a national holiday, Tag der Deutschen Einheit, German Unity Day).
In 1949, following the Second World War, Konrad Adenauer became the new Germany's first chancellor, the "George Washington" of West Germany. This one man gets most of the credit for creating today's Democratic Federal Republic of Germany. That same year also saw the birth of communist East Germany (die Deutsche Demokratische Republik) in the former Soviet Occupation Zone. For the next forty years, Germany's people and its history would be divided into an eastern and a western part.

But it was not until August 1961 that a wall physically split the two Germanys. The Berlin Wall (die Mauer) and the barbed wire fence that lined the entire border between East and West Germany became a major symbol of the Cold War.

The creation of today's Democratic
Federal Republic of Germany
The Wall fell in November 1989. Germans had lived two separate national lives for four decades.

Most Germans, including West German chancellor Helmut Kohl, underestimated the difficulties of reunifying people who had been divided and living under very different conditions for 40 years.

Even today, more than a decade after the Wall's collapse, true unification is still a goal. But once the barrier of the Wall was gone, Germans had no real choice other than reunification
(die Wiedervereinigung).
The Scramble Wall and the Reunification of Germany
The Celts, first Germans
Two of Germany's most famous writers, Goethe and Schiller, identified the central aspect of most of Germany's history with their poetic lament, "Germany? But where is it? I cannot find that country."

"Germany" had been a loose association of 39 German states known as the German League (der Deutsche Bund )

Instead, Europe's German-speaking territories were divided into several hundred kingdoms, principalities, duchies, bishoprics, fiefdoms and independent cities and towns.

Germany was created in 1871 under the leadership of chancellor Otto von Bismarck after Prussia (Preußen) had conquered most of German-speaking Europe.

Between 962 and the beginning of the 19th century, the German territories were loosely organized into the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation.

The initially non-hereditary Emperor, elected by the many princes, dukes, and bishops of the constituent lands and confirmed by the Pope, nominally governed over a vast territory, but had very limited ability to intervene in the affairs of the hundreds of entities that made up the Empire, many of which would often wage war against each other.

The Empire was never able to develop into a centralized state.
The Holy Roman Empire
Until 1871, there was no "Germany"
Otto von Bismarck
Relations between state and church were changed by the Reformation, which began with Martin Luther's 95 theses, and came to a head in 1547, when Charles V scattered the forces of the Protestant League at Mühlberg. The Counter-Reformation followed.

A dispute over the succession to the Bohemian throne brought on the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), which devastated Germany and left the empire divided into hundreds of small principalities virtually independent of the emperor.

Treaty of Verdun (843), Charlemagne's lands east of the Rhine were ceded to the German Prince Louis. Additional territory acquired by the Treaty of Mersen (870) gave Germany approximately the area it maintained throughout of the Middle Ages.
For several centuries after Otto the Great was crowned king in 936, German rulers were also usually heads of the Holy Roman Empire.
By the 14th century, the Holy Roman Empire was little more than a loose federation of the German princes who elected the Holy Roman Emperor. In 1438, Albert of Hapsburg became emperor, and for the next several centuries the Hapsburg line ruled the Holy Roman Empire until its decline in 1806.
Reformation: The church and the State

German nationalism developed into an important unifying and sometimes liberalizing force during this time, though it became increasingly marked by an exclusionary, racially-based definition of nationhood that included anti-Semitic tendencies. However, eventual unification of Germany was essentially the result of Prussian expansionism rather than the victory of nationalist sentiment.

Prussia's economic growth outstripped Austria's during the latter half of the 19th century and Prussia-controlled Germany became one of Europe's industrial powerhouses.

Under Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, Prussia defeated Austria (1866) and France (1870) in wars that paved the way for the formation of the German Empire under Emperor Wilhelm I in 1871. Germany became a federal state, with foreign and military policy determined at the national level, but many other policies remained the purview of the states.
Unification and Imperial Germany
The Raise of Prussia
The 18th and 19th centuries were marked by the rise of Prussia as the second powerful, dominant state in the German-speaking territories alongside Austria, and Austrian-Prussian rivalry became the dominant political factor in German affairs. Successive Prussian kings succeeded in modernizing, centralizing, and expanding the Prussian state,
Despite Prussia's emphasis on militarism and authority, Prussia also became a center of the German Enlightenment and was known for its religious tolerance, with its western regions being predominantly Catholic and Jews being granted complete legal equality by 1812. After humiliating losses to Napoleon's armies, Prussia embarked on a series of administrative, military, economic, and education reforms that eventually succeeded in turning Prussia into the Continent's strongest state.

Following Napoleon's defeat, the 1814-1815 Congress of Vienna replaced the Holy Roman Empire with the German Confederation, made up of 38 independent states. A loose confederation, this construct had no common citizenship, legal system, or administrative or executive organs.
Europe's largest population, Germany is in many ways a land of contradictions. The land of "Dichter und Denker" ("poets and thinkers") is also one of the world's leading export countries.

It's a country that is both deeply conservative, valuing tradition, hard work, precision, and fiscal responsibility, and one of the world's most liberal countries, with a generous social welfare state, a strongly held commitment to environmentalism, and a postwar determination to combat xenophobia.

But Germany, which reunited 22 years ago after 45 years of division, is also a country in transition. The long-standing, unwritten taboo against displaying German flags lifted during the 2006 World Cup, and as the horrors of World War II, though not forgotten, recede, the country is in the process of working out a new relationship with itself and its neighbors.
Germany, the world's fourth-largest economy. Until 2009, the country was the world's largest exporter, then China overtook it.

The recession hit Germany hard, though thanks to a strong social network, the unemployed and underemployed did not suffer on the level we are used to in the United States.

In Germany, losing your job does not mean you lose your health insurance, and the unemployed receive financial help from the state to meet housing payments and other basic expenses.
Germany has a strong voice in setting the EU's economic agenda and has traditionally acted as a kind of rich uncle that other countries turn to when they need an economic bailout.
And Social Media in Germany?
Germans are not big fans of Facebook. Why?

Experiences of life in a police state under both the Nazi regime and the East German regime, they don't like the idea of anyone collecting personal information about them.

Germany has some of the most extensive data privacy laws in the world, with everything from credit card numbers to medical histories strictly protected.

CIA World Factbook (March 2012)
U.S. Dept. of State Country Background Notes ( March 2012)

Retrieved from http://globaledge.msu.edu/search?q=germany

Retrieved from http://www.fodors.com/world/europe/germany/feature_30005.html

The German Empire

The postwar Weimar Republic (1919-33) was established as a broadly democratic state, but the government was severely handicapped and eventually doomed by economic problems and the rise of the political extremes.

The dozens of political parties represented in the federal parliament never allowed stable government formation, creating political chaos. The hyperinflation of 1923, the world depression that began in 1929, and the social unrest stemming from resentment toward the conditions of the
Versailles Treaty worked to destroy the Weimar government.

The National Socialist (Nazi) Party, led by Adolf Hitler, stressed nationalist and racist themes while promising to put the unemployed back to work. The party blamed many of Germany's ills on the alleged influence of Jewish and non-German ethnic groups. The party also gained support in response to fears of growing communist strength. In the 1932 elections, the Nazis won a third of the vote. In a fragmented party structure, this gave the Nazis a powerful parliamentary caucus, which they used to undermine the Republic.

Continued instability resulted in
President Paul von Hindenburg
offering the chancellorship to Hitler in January 1933. After President von Hindenburg died in
1934, Hitler assumed that office as well.
Nazi revanchism and expansionism led to World War II, which resulted in the destruction of Germany's political and economic infrastructures and led to its division.

After Germany's unconditional surrender on May 8, 1945, the United States, the United Kingdom, the U.S.S.R. and, later, France occupied the country and assumed responsibility for its administration.

The United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union agreed at Potsdam in August 1945 to treat Germany as a single economic unit with some central administrative departments in a decentralized framework.

Soviet policy turned increasingly toward dominating the part of Europe where Soviet armies were present, including eastern Germany.

In 1948, the Soviets, in an attempt to abrogate agreements for Four-Power control of the city, blockaded Berlin.
Until May 1949, the Allied-occupied part of Berlin was kept supplied only by an Allied airlift.

The "Berlin airlift" succeeded in forcing the Soviets to accept, for the time being, the Allied role and the continuation of freedom in a portion of the city, West Berlin.
The Weimar Republic and Fascism's Rise and Defeat

rebounded to become
the continent's economic giant.

Today the country is the engine
of European cooperation.
Major Cities:
Berlin (capital) 3,477,900,
Hamburg 1,703,800,
Munich (München) 1,251,100,
Cologne (Köln) 963,300,
Frankfurt 656,200

World War II
Once in power, Hitler and his party first undermined and then
abolished democratic institutions and opposition parties.
The Nazi leadership immediately jailed many Jewish citizens and opposition figures and withdrew their political rights.
Hitler's Nuremburg Laws subsequently deprived all of Germany's Jews of their political rights
and also of their economic assets and professional licenses, foreshadowing the systematic plundering of Jewish assets throughout Nazi-occupied territory.

The Nazis implemented a program of genocide.
In a catastrophe, the Holocaust or Shoah, roughly six million European Jews from Germany and Nazi-occupied countries were murdered.

Nazi forces also carried out a campaign of ethnic extermination against Europe's Roma/Sinti and murdered thousands of Eastern Europeans, homosexuals, mentally disabled people, Freemasons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and opposition figures, among others.
The People
Germans value order, privacy and punctuality. They are thrifty, hard working
and industrious. Germans respect perfectionism in all areas of business and private life. In Germany, there is a sense of community and social conscience
and strong desire for belonging
German Common Business Practices
Meeting and Greeting
At a business or social meeting, shake hands with everyone present when arriving and leaving.

When introducing yourself, never use your title.
Introduce yourself by your last name only.

Never shake hands with one hand in your pocket
Names and Titles
Use last names and appropriate titles until specifically invited by your German host or colleagues to use their first names.
Titles are very important. Never use titles incorrectly and never fail to use them. If unsure, err in favor of a higher title
Body Language
Germans may appear reserved and unfriendly until you get to know them better. Never put your hands in your pockets when talking with someone. "Thumbs up" gesture means "one" or is a sign of appreciation or agreement. Making hands into two fists, thumbs tucked inside the other fingers and making pounding motion lightly on a surface expresses "good luck."

Never use the "okay" sign (index finger and thumb jointed together
to make a circle). This is considered a rude gesture.
Don't point your index finger to your own head.
This is an insult
Corporate Culture
Germans take punctuality for business meetings and social
occasions seriously. Tardiness is viewed as thoughtless
and rude. Call with an explanation if you are delayed.
Send company profiles, personal profiles, etc.,
to German colleagues before your visit
to establish credibility
Full transcript