Last updated in March 2016

Political relations

Relations between the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and Germany are close and trustful, both on the political and economic fronts and in the cultural realm. Members of both the national and regional governments and parliaments in Luxembourg and Germany are in close contact. The two countries are also important partners for each other within the framework of the EU.

The Federal President’s official visit to Luxembourg from 3 to 5 November 2014 was a great success and a high point in bilateral relations bthat met with a positive response among the population in Luxembourg and in the country’s media.

There are currently around 12,800 Germans living in Luxembourg, including many persons with dual nationality. In addition, every day some 35,000 Germans commute to work in the Grand Duchy.

Cross-border cooperation

Luxembourg is the hub of the Greater Region of Luxembourg, comprising the Saarland, Lorraine, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Wallonia as well as Belgium’s French- and German-speaking communities, with its thriving cultural and economic sectors (except for Lorraine). The cooperation area, which is also known as the Euroregio SaarLorLuxRhine, is founded on an agreement between the governments of the Federal Republic of Germany, the French Republic and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg on cooperation in the border regions, which was signed on 16 October 1980 and whose main political body is the Greater Region Summit. The principal areas of cross-border cooperation are regional planning, labour mobility, civil defence, culture, tourism and transport.

More than 220,000 commuters work in the Greater Region, a number that is trending upwards, with 167,000 commuters working in Luxembourg alone. The Grand Duchy’s high real wage level makes it increasingly attractive to workers from across the region. Luxembourg’s economy is constantly creating new jobs for highly skilled workers.

Economic relations

Germany is Luxembourg’s principal trading partner. In 2014, 27.8 per cent of Luxembourg’s exports went to Germany and 27.2 per cent of its imports came from there, putting Germany ahead of France and behind Belgium. Luxembourg’s exports (including steel products) supply Germany’s automotive industry in particular. Relations are also close in the financial sector. Of the 148 banks registered in Luxembourg in 2015, 33 are branches of German banks.

Cultural relations

Germany and Luxembourg maintain wide-ranging cultural relations. Thanks to the two countries’ geographical proximity, Luxembourgians are extremely well informed about Germany.

A bilateral cultural agreement has been in place since 1980.

In 2003, Germany, France and Luxembourg established the trilateral Pierre Werner Institute (IPW). By promoting cultural and intellectual dialogue between the founding nations, the IPW is seeking to help develop a European citizenship in the tradition of the European Enlightenment and in the light of experience gained in the post-war period of the 20th century.

The Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law was officially opened there on 8 May 2013. It is the first MPI in the field of law located outside Germany. Luxembourg makes substantial contributions to its upkeep.

The German-Luxembourg school project “Schengen-Lyzeum” (Schengen Grammar School) was opened in the Saarland town of Perl, close to the border with Luxembourg, on 27 August 2007. Some 800 students are taught in German, French and Luxembourgish by teachers from the two countries. Students there took the German university entrance examination (Abitur) for the first time at the end of the 2014-2015 school year.

The University of Luxembourg, which was established as recently as 2003, forms the University of the Greater Region network along with five other universities in Germany, France and Belgium. Germany is an attractive study destination for many students from Luxembourg, especially humanities and science students. A cooperation agreement has been in place between the German Research Foundation and the Fonds National de la Recherche Luxembourg since 2009.

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