Germany is one of the most important exporters and importers of the world. In 2000, Germany was in second place in terms of exports of goods (539.7 billion dollars, or 10% of all world exports), as well as in second place in imports of goods (466.6 billion dollars, or 8.4% of world imports). Somewhat more modest than the country’s position in the export of services is the fourth place (75.7 billion dollars, or 5.9%), and as an importer of services, Germany is still the second (121.8 billion dollars, or 9.4% of imports).  These figures characterize the strong position of Germany (trade balance + 27 billion dollars).

Despite the leading importance of domestic demand, exports remain a powerful factor in the recovery of the German economy. Germany attaches great importance to export policy. Therefore, every third engineer, technician or entrepreneur works for export. The country’s exports account for 23.6% of GDP. The German economy is quite strongly integrated into the system of world economic relations. The main foreign trade partners of the Federal Republic of Germany are the industrialized countries of the West. In 1999, 56% of German exports of goods accounted for 56% of German exports of goods. 10 countries of Western Europe (for example, France – 12% of exports and 11% of imports; Great Britain –  8 and 6.3%; the Netherlands – 7.7 and 8.2%, etc.); 10% – to the United States, 30% – to Russia.

Currently, Germany is one of the world’s leading creditors. It accounts for 5% of the global capital market (5th place in the world).

The main foreign regions of direct investment in Germany are Western Europe (74.5% of all investments). No more than 12% goes to the countries of Eastern Europe, and most of all to the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland. The creation of german subsidiaries and joint ventures is widely practiced in them. In general, Germany’s foreign investments exceed 250 billion German marks. Foreign investors have invested more than 150 billion German marks in its economy.

Germany is the main economic partner of Russia and other CIS countries, their largest investor. The prolonged structural crisis in the economies of Russia and other CIS countries had an extremely negative impact on the industrial production of East Germany, for which the Soviet Union in the past was the main customer, consuming up to 40% of its exports and providing employment to more than 1 million people.

Crisis phenomena in the credit and financial sphere affect trade relations between Germany and Russia. Russian importers are characterized by a high share of prepayment, which is due to several reasons: distrust of German firms, the refusal of German banks to provide them with export credits without guarantees and often the inability of both partners to obtain these guarantees in their countries. In the structure of trade, Russia for modern Germany is one of the largest suppliers of oil, petroleum products, natural gas, and Germany for Russia is  the main supplier of machinery and other industrial equipment, railway cars, steel sheet, chemicals and food products.

In mutual cooperation between Russia and Germany, one of the most important places is occupied by the sphere of capital investments. The balance of mutual investments is formed in favor of the Federal Republic of Germany. According to German experts, more than 8 billion German marks have been invested in the Russian economy, which is approximately 60% of all accumulated German investments in Russia. One of the significant projects is the modernization of the KamAZ concern. A new moment in German investment was the participation of German companies in Russian privatization. Siemens acquired 10% of the authorized capital of JSC Kaluga Turbine Works  (50% of turbines of the former USSR are produced). Siemens will invest DM 2 million in the reconstruction of two workshops of this plant.

In the credit and financial sphere, the development of interbank cooperation is positive. Dozens of Russian commercial banks have established correspondent relations with the leading banks of Germany, quickly and professionally carrying out the necessary banking operations.

Germany is the main partner of Belarus in the West. The share of Germany in the total volume of foreign trade turnover of the Republic of Belarus in 2001 amounted to 15.37%; exports to Germany – 8.15%, and imports – 24.10%.

Products of the chemical industry form the basis of Belarusian exports to Germany (28%), in second place – textiles and clothing (19%). Precision mechanics and instruments account for 10% of total exports. Wood, woodworking products and food industry products make up 8% each, steel and iron products – 5%,

leather – 4%, vehicles (tractors) – 3% of exports.

Joint ventures for the production and processing of agricultural products are being established; cooperation in the field of production and sale of potash fertilizers between the production associations “Belaruskali” and the German concern “Kali und salz”; At BelavtoMAZ, the production of buses was organized jointly with the Neoplan company. The result of economic cooperation with Germany is also the production of modern heavy-duty trucks “MAZ-MAN”. The participants of the joint venture are MAN Nuttzfarzeuge AG (51%) and BelavtoMAZ (39%).

Production and sale of medical products is carried out by JV “Frebor” in Borisov. The volume of its supplies is about 10% of the total exports of Belarus to Germany.

For a number of years, a joint venture for the production of shoes “Belwest” has been operating.

German companies participate in the activities of free economic zones on the territory of Belarus. For example, the FEZ “Brest”.

Interbank cooperation of the Republic of Belarus with Kamertsbank, Deutschebank and Dresdenbank is also expanding.

Since 1992, the Belarusian-German Council for Economic Cooperation in the Field of Agriculture and Processing of Agricultural Products has been operating; chemical and pharmaceutical industries, production of chemical equipment; mechanical engineering and automotive industry; electronics and instrumentation; construction and building materials; in banking and insurance.

In general, Germany remains the Belarusian trading partner “number one” among foreign countries.