Directorate-General for Economic Affairs
Germany is one of the leading industrial countries and at the same time one of the world’s major exporters. More than one in four euros is earned by exporting goods and services and over one in five jobs depends on foreign trade.
One of the Federal Foreign Office’s most important tasks is to ease the way for German businesses to get into foreign markets. The framework conditions for an open world trading system are created through multilateral negotiations and agreements to ensure German companies fair and equal access to markets all over the world.
Germany’s exporters need a stable and predictable international situation and the best possible relations with global trade partners. For the work of the Federal Foreign Office this means: successful foreign policy creates the conditions for successful foreign trade relations.
Success in foreign trade depends not least on effective trade promotion. The German system is characterised by a division of responsibilities between the state and business.
To give German companies the best possible support, the network of German missions abroad works closely with the German Chambers of Commerce Abroad and the correspondents of Germany Trade & Invest.
In this context, the German embassies and consulates ensure worldwide coordination, maintain contacts with authorities in the host countries, commit themselves to improving market access for German firms and, where necessary, assist them directly. This especially applies to small and medium-sized enterprises.
For Germany, economic issues also involve research and technology to a high degree. Only through top-quality research, constant technological innovation and state-of-the-art production can Germany hope to hold its own in global markets in future.
The peaceful use of nuclear energy, aerospace, high-speed transport, information and communications technology, transport and tourism policy, or energy, climate and environment policy: in all these fields the Federal Foreign Office is active in maintaining and intensifying foreign relations, the basis for cooperation between German and foreign companies.