In Europe, Germany has the largest national economy. The country is also the world's fourth largest economy by nominal GDP and the fifth largest by PPP. Germany is the founding member of both the Eurozone and the European Union. The country's economic model features a social market economy approach that is characterized by a low level of corruption, a developed infrastructure, a high level of innovation, a highly qualified labour force and a large capital stock. Having the world's highest trade surplus of $310 billion as recorded in 2016, Germany is the biggest capital exporter globally.
Overview of Germany's Exports
With $1.27 trillion (€1.21 trillion) in exports, Germany was ranked the world's third largest exporter in both goods and services in 2016. The three main sectors that contribute to Germany’s total GDP are agriculture at 0.9%, industry at 29.1% and services at 70%. The country's exports account for 41% of the entire national output. Some of the country's top exports include cars, vehicle parts, pharmaceuticals, aircrafts, helicopters and space craft, refined petroleum, petroleum gas, engine parts, machinery having individual functions, medical instruments and human or animal blood. Germany is rich in nickel, timber, potash, natural gas, salt, iron ore, copper, salt, and uranium. The main export partners for Germany include the US, France, the UK, the Netherlands, China, Italy, Austria, Poland, and Switzerland.
The Main Industries in Germany
There are a number of industries in Germany that play a major role in the exportation of products throughout the world. Some of the main industries in the country include production, machinery, space and aircraft, food and beverages, plastics, and chemicals. As of 2017, the country ranks 17th in terms of the "ease of doing business" index.
Germany's Top Three Export Products
The top export product in Germany is cars accounting for $148,350 million in 2012. Since the 1960s, Germany has been the absolute leader of automotive production in Europe and is the largest exporter of motor vehicles in the world. The German automobile industry is the most innovative and competitive in the world. The country has the world's third highest automobile production and fourth highest total motor vehicle production. Some of the notable car brands exported by Germany include Audi, Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen, and BMW.
With $54,509 million worth of goods exported in 2012, vehicle parts are the second most exported product from Germany. The country is also the world's largest exporter of vehicle parts. Germany exports the vehicle parts for many leading car brands in the world. Doors, body and main parts, audio and video devices, breaking systems, fuel supply system, gauges and meters, windows, sensors, electrical and electronics are some examples of exported car parts.
Pharmaceuticals are the third leading products exported from Germany with a value of $48,170 million. The country is also the top exporter for pharmaceuticals in the world. The pharmaceutical industry in Germany represents the largest sub-sector of the country's healthcare industry and has been a significant global player for many years. German pharmaceutical products continue to dominate the world market due to the constant increase in quality in both production and development.
Other Top Exported Products
Of the top 30 German export products, most comprise of machine devices such as combustion engines, excavation machinery, washing and bottling machines, tractors, gas turbines, among others. Electronics and electrical gadgets such as computers, integrated circuits, electrical transformers, industrial printers and electrical control boards also make up the list of top export products. Natural resources on the list include petroleum gas, refined petroleum and gold.