Friday, December 11, 2009
There are around 1,300 breweries in Germany, more than in any other country except the United States which has 1,500.The German beer market is somewhat sheltered from the rest of the world beer market by the German brewers' adherence to the Reinheitsgebot ("purity order") dating from 1516 (and recently updated in the Vorläufiges Biergesetz of 1993), according to which the only allowed ingredients of beer are water, hops and barley-malt
Glass-blowing, stein making, nutcracker building and painting, and Christmas ornament creating are all a part of a large German heritage.
What is Deutschland best known for?
When you think of Germany, BMW, Porsche, Audi, VW, Opel, and many other popular car brands come to mind. Germany is also known for its remarkable scenery, history, and traditions.
When I think of Germany, I think of Haribo gummies, Milka chocolate, steins, castles, nutcrackers, lederhosen, cuckoo clocks, fruity schnapps, and their delicious variety of foods and desserts.
What does Germany have to offer to the world?
Main exports from Germany are motor vehicles trailers and semi-trailers, electrical machinery, chemicals and chemicals products. European countries remain the top-trading partner of Germany having 2/3 shares in Germany's total trade. Among others countries US, China, Japan, South Africa, Canada, Brazil, Australia and South Korea are the other countries, with which Germany has substantial trade links.
What is there to do in this gorgeous country?
Whether it’s drinking lots of beer at Oktoberfest or walking through the gorgeous paths of the Black forest, there is something for everyone in this amazing country.
Leipzig - the city of peaceful revolution
Leipzig, a city in the northwest of Saxony that’s famous for its trade fairs as well as its literary and musical heritage, is a firm favorite with visitors from around the world. It is a buzzing, vibrant centre of culture ranging from refined to hip and trendy. A Mediterranean flair coupled with art, culture and history, plus associations with famous names like Bach, Mendelssohn, Wagner, Goethe, Schiller and the St. Thomas's choir - these are all aspects that define Leipzig. Make sure to allow enough time when you visit this multi-faceted city.
Wintersport-Arena Sauerland - simply exhilarating
The ski area of the Wintersport-Arena Sauerland offers the most complete winter sports experience north of the Alps and is particularly well suited for families. It offers 150 lifts, more than 100 kilometers of pistes ranging from beginner to expert level, downhill runs of up to 2km and slopes with a gradient of up to 30 per cent. All-round winter fun for skiers, tobogganists, snowboarders, cross-country skiers, hikers and other snow enthusiasts.
The Black Forest
There is so much to offer in the Black Forest! Whether you’re out with the kids and you want to play in their fun parks, or just relax in one of their spas, it’s all available. Hiking paths, winter activities, beautiful never ending waterfalls, delicious desserts, antique shops, and various places to whine and dine are all available to anyone who visits.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
All about those politics!
It quickly became a successful model and a prime export: After the Second World War, the Basic Law provided freedom and stability – albeit initially only for the Germans in the West of the nation that remained divided until 1990. The basic cornerstones of Germany democracy includes: the primacy of the basic rights, the definition of the principles of a democratic and social federal state, and the foundation of a supreme court that watches over adherence to the constitution.
The state, the legal system and the citizens
The political system of the Federal Republic of Germany represents the second democratic system in German history. At the Parliamentary Council when designing the new constitution, the Basic Law, the founders of the Federal Republic took into account the lessons that had been learned from the failure of the first democracy, namely the Weimar Republic, and the Nazi dictatorship. The Federal Republic of Germany was born from the ashes of World War II. And in 1949 democracy was initially established only in the Western section of a Germany that had been divided into two states. Yet the Basic Law, although originally intended as a temporary solution, stated that its goal was reunification “in free self-determination”.
The second German democracy turned out to be a success. There were several reasons for this, among which were the value placed on a way of life based on the principle of liberty following the dictatorship and a striving for acceptance by the country’s democratic neighbors. But the Basic Law also had its role to play in the success. In 1990, when 40 years of German division came to an end, the Basic Law was adopted as the constitution of a united Germany.
German law distinguishes between companies limited by shares and partnerships (general partnership, limited partnership, dormant partnership).
The most common type of business organizations in Germany is the company with limited liability (Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung = GmbH) governed by the Act concerning Companies with Limited Liability (Gesetz betreffend die Gesellschaften mit beschränkter Haftung - GmbHG) The shareholders participate by means of capital contributions into the share capital, broken down into initial individual payments on the total investment, but without being personally responsible for the company debts. Just one person is sufficient to set up a GmbH. The share capital must be at least EURO 25,000. In order to set up a GmbH, an agreement between the shareholders must be prepared and notarized by a notary public. The company's existence becomes legally effective upon its registration into the commercial register. The company name of the GmbH must always contain the addendum "with limited liability" or the pertinent abbreviation mbH.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Germany is often known as Land der Dichter und Denker, which means “The land of the poets and thinkers”.
Germans pride themselves in knowing that some of the greatest composers, philosophers, and ideas were formed in their country.
Beethoven and Bach-two of the world’s greatest composers
Immanuel Kant- a well-known and important philosopher
University of Berlin served as an influential model for a number of modern western universities.
My Favorite Part: The Music Scene!!
As of 2006, Germany is the fifth largest music market in the world and has exerted a strong influence on dance and Rock music, and pioneered trance music. Artists such as Herbert Grönemeyer, Scorpions, Rammstein, Nena, Dieter Bohlen, Tokio Hotel and Modern Talking have enjoyed international fame. German musicians and, particularly, the pioneering bands Tangerine Dream and Kraftwerk have also contributed to the development of electronic music. Germany hosts many large rock music festivals annually. The Rock am Ring festival is the largest music festival in Germany, and among the largest in the world. German artists also make up a large percentage of Industrial music acts, which is called Neue Deutsche Härte. Germany hosts one of the largest Goth rock scenes and festivals in the entire world, with events like Wave-Gotik-Treffen easily attracting up to 30,000 people.
Second to Music Would be…Sports!!
Sport forms an integral part of German life, as demonstrated by the fact that 27 million Germans are members of a sports club and an additional twelve million pursue such an activity individually. Football is by far the most popular sport, and the German Football Federation (Deutscher Fußballbund) with more than 6.3 million members is the largest athletic organization in the country. It also attracts the greatest audience, with hundreds of thousands of spectators attending Bundesliga matches and millions more watching on television. The other two most popular sports in Germany are marksmanship and tennis represented by the German Marksmen’s Federation and the German Tennis Federation respectively, both including more than a million members. Other popular sports include handball, volleyball, basketball, and ice hockey. Germany has historically been one of the strongest contenders in the Olympic Games. In the 2008 Summer Olympics, Germany finished fifth overall, whereas in the 2006 Winter Olympics Germany finished first.
Food! Glorious Food!
Beer- According to a representative survey, beer is a German's favorite drink. 79% of German adults drink beer regularly. 67% of German women and 91% of German men drink beer at least once a month.
There is also a huge festival that celebrates the greatness of beer- Oktoberfest, which is held in Muenchin (Munich) at the end of September each year.
Though corn is a favorite in America, corn in Germany is usually used to feed live-stock, such as pigs.
Berliners are some of the most delicious pastries. Similar to America’s cream or jelly-filled donuts, they are filled with raspberry, strawberry, and cherry jelly, as well as Bavarian cream, and are often rolled in white or powdered sugar.
Cakes are generally made with all fresh fruits, topped with fresh apples, strawberries, plums, and cherries, but usually don’t consist of much or any sugar.
Bratwurst and Sauerkraut- what Germany is best known for other than their delicious beer.
Beliefs and Religion:
The German government has limited responsibilities for culture, which is devolved to the states of Germany, called Länder.
64.1% of the German population belongs to Christian denominations.
31.4% are Roman Catholic
32.7% are affiliated with Protestantism
(The figures are known accurately because Germany imposes a church tax on those who disclose a religious affiliation).
The North and East is predominantly Protestant, the South and West rather Catholic. Nowadays there is a non-religious majority in Hamburg and the East German states. Germany formed a substantial part of the Roman Catholic Holy Roman Empire, but was also the source of Protestant reformers such as Martin Luther. Historically, Germany had a substantial Jewish population. Only a few thousand people of Jewish origin remained in Germany after the Holocaust, but the German Jewish community now has approximately 100,000 members, many from the former Soviet Union. Germany also has a substantial Muslim minority, most of whom are from Turkey.
What’s With Your Attitude?
Germans believed that women had two important roles: one was to have children and look after them, the other was to look after her husband. Most women were happy to take on this role as it meant they didn't have to compete with men for jobs. They had a lot of rights taken away from them they were never made to feel like second class citizens. They were the future of Germany and were precious to Hitler and the future he had planned. Hitler summed up his ideas at Nuremberg in 1934 where he delivered his theory of women and their role in Germany. He believed that woman had their own world, which was smaller and it focused on her children, her husband and housework, the man's world revolved around work and power.
Let’s Get Down to Business!
German, Austrian, and Swiss business concerns are known throughout the world. Volkswagen AG is the largest manufacturer of automobiles in Europe and one of the biggest firms in Germany. Adidas AG, founded by a German, is one of the most important makers of sportswear in Europe. Nestle AG, most famous for chocolate, is Switzerland’s best-known food and beverage concern, and next to Swissair [now “Swiss”] and Rolex, one of the corporate names most readily associated with Switzerland. But well-known giants like these make up less than ten percent of the companies in the German-speaking business world.
Most German firms are small to medium-sized concerns, known in German as the Mittelstand. There is no direct English equivalent for Mittelstand, a term that goes back to feudal times. The German word refers not only to small and medium-sized businesses, but also to a common work ethic and to the middle-class business people who employ about two-thirds of the German work force. Although the Mittelstand was virtually eliminated in communist East Germany, it has existed in the German lands for centuries. Today, the Mittelstand accounts for about half of the total industrial production of Germany alone.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Annual growth rate: (2006) 2.7%; (2007) 2.5%; (2008 est.) 1.7%.
Inflation rate (April 2009): 1.5%;
Unemployment rate: (2007) 9.0%; (April 2009) 8.6%.
Natural resources: Iron, hard coal, lignite, potash, natural gas.
Agriculture (0.9% of
Industry (26.0 % of
Types--car-making; mechanical, electrical, and precision engineering; chemicals; environmental technology; optics; medical technology; biotech and genetic engineering; nanotechnology; aerospace; logistics.
Trade (2007): Exports--$1.328 trillion: chemicals, motor vehicles, iron and steel products, manufactured goods, electrical products. Major markets--
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Central Europe, bordering the Baltic and North Sea, between the Netherlands and Denmark
slightly smaller than Montana
total: 357,022 sq km
land: 348,672 sq km
water: 8,350 sq km
82,329,758 (July 2009 est.)
German 91.5%, Turkish 2.4%, other 6.1% (made up largely of Greek, Italian, Polish, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Spanish)
coal, lignite, natural gas, iron ore, copper, nickel, uranium, potash, salt, construction materials, timber, arable land
lowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in south
Civil law system with indigenous concepts; judicial review of legislative acts in the Federal Constitutional Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Chief of state: President Horst KOEHLER (since 1 July 2004)
Head of government: Chancellor Angela MERKEL (since 22 November 2005)
Cabinet: Cabinet or Bundesminister (Federal Ministers) appointed by the president on the recommendation of the chancellor
Specific Trade Agreements:
- Free trade agreements with the other countries of the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway) and Switzerland
- Customs unions with Andorra, San Marino, and Turkey
- Trade agreements with former British, French, and Portuguese colonies in Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific (the ACP countries)
- Trade agreements with countries around the Mediterranean, including those of southeastern Europe