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Germany Is Well Positioned for International Trade with Research-Intensive Goods


  • Marius Clemens
  • Dieter Schumacher


Germany is the world's biggest gross and net exporter of research-intensive goods, even ahead of the US and Japan. Per capita Germany also has the largest export surplus for research-intensive goods with around USD 3,900. Furthermore, Germany increasingly benefits as an importer - and thus as a user of technologies - from the international division of work. However, Germany's comparative advantages for research-intensive goods have declined in comparison to the middle of the 1990s. This is not due to a change in export specializations but rather to the tremendous increase in imports; this is reflected above all in the medium and low price segments where emerging markets have been catching up in research-intensive goods. After the financial market crisis had its impact on the real economy, it is now even more important to strengthen the innovative capabilities of German companies. The most important prerequisite of ensuring this is being equipped with R&D and human capital.

Suggested Citation

  • Marius Clemens & Dieter Schumacher, 2010. "Germany Is Well Positioned for International Trade with Research-Intensive Goods," Weekly Report, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 6(11), pages 79-85.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwrp:wr6-11

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    International trade; Country and industry studies of trade; Industrialization; Manufacturing and service industries; Choice of technology;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • O14 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Industrialization; Manufacturing and Service Industries; Choice of Technology


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