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Unkonventionelle Lösungen für eine zukunftsfähige Gesellschaft

Posts Tagged ‘Germany’

He’s a risk‑taker‘: Germans divided over Elon Musk’s new GigaFactory

Posted by hkarner - 6. Januar 2021

Date: 06‑01‑2021

Source: The Guardian

The Tesla project will put Grünheide on the map, but some say it is doing ‘irreversible’ harm to the environment

Eon Musk visiting the construction site in Grünheide.

For the past 10 months, Silas Heineken has been flying a drone over one of Germany’s biggest building sites and posting the images on YouTube.

The 14‑year‑old self‑named “Tesla Kid” has built a significant following, as tens of thousands tune in each week to see the latest developments in Elon Musk’s GigaFactory as it emerges at speed from the sandy ground of Brandenburg, south‑east of Berlin.

“He is a huge visionary who has great ideas, which he has managed to realise,” Heineken said in an interview.

Silas Heineken, aka Tesla Kid. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Germany and Europe Could Fall Short on Vaccine Supplies

Posted by hkarner - 21. Dezember 2020

Date: 20‑12‑2020

Source: DER SPIEGEL

Subject: The Planning Disaster

The EU and Berlin have insisted there will be sufficient vaccine available, but delays in signing purchasing contracts mean that the elixir will arrive late and there might not be enough. The EU even declined an option that would have allowed for the purchase of hundreds of millions of extra doses.

German Health Minister Jens Spahn: Optimism hasn’t been matched by reality.

Such are images of hope: Nurses getting vaccinated. Pallets of packaged vaccines distributed on special flights. Mayors exulting over „the beginning of the end of the pandemic.” A president who is preparing the country for better times. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Who Will Succeed Merkel?

Posted by hkarner - 13. Dezember 2020

Date: 12‑12‑2020

Source: Project Syndicate by Josef Joffe

SJosef Joffe, a fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, serves on the editorial council of the German weekly Die Zeit. 

Germany’s Christian Democrats are poised to choose a new party leader, and that person is almost certain to replace Chancellor Angela Merkel when she steps down in September 2021. All three contenders must somehow distinguish themselves from their rivals while boldly campaigning for continuity.

HAMBURG – German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has ruled the 71‑year‑old Federal Republic for a total of 50 years. When she steps down next fall after 16 years in office, it is safe to assume that another Christian Democrat will succeed her. Who will it be?

Within the next few weeks, the CDU will hold its 33rd party convention, and choose a new leader. Whoever it is will most likely be anointed as the CDU’s candidate for chancellor when Merkel steps down, and there is little doubt that the CDU will come out on top in next September’s general election, whereupon it will take the lead in forming the next government.

The three men vying for the party’s top job are not household names abroad. The first (going in alphabetical order) is Armin Laschet, the minister‑president of North Rhine‑Westphalia and a longtime party workhorse whose charisma does not match his competence.

Next is Friedrich Merz, who led the CDU caucus in the Bundestag two decades ago, until he was driven out by Merkel as she prepared her own run to the top. After slinking off to the private sector and making oodles of money, he is pushing for a comeback. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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A Triumph of German Innovation and Immigration

Posted by hkarner - 26. November 2020

Date: 25‑11‑2020

Source: Project Syndicate by Hans‑Werner Sinn

Hans‑Werner Sinn, Professor Emeritus of Economics at the University of Munich, is a former president of the Ifo Institute for Economic Research and serves on the German economy ministry’s Advisory Council. He is the author, most recently, of The Euro Trap: On Bursting Bubbles, Budgets, and Beliefs.

 BioNTech’s new‑model RNA‑based vaccine has emerged as the leading contender to bring an end to the COVID‑19 pandemic, possibly within the coming year. Pioneered by a Turkish‑German couple whose parents immigrated to Germany in the 1960s, the breakthrough’s symbolic importance matches its practical value.

MUNICH – The world took note when the German start‑up BioNTech announced its breakthrough in the development of a new type of vaccine to combat COVID‑19. After testing tens of thousands of people, BioNTech’s vaccine has been shown to be 95% effective in providing protection for those who would otherwise have been infected. The company was the first to apply for emergency use authorization for a coronavirus vaccine in the United States, and it has announced that it will soon take similar steps in Europe. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Germany is being forced to take a leadership role it never wanted

Posted by hkarner - 4. Oktober 2020

Date: 01‑10‑2020

Source: The Economist

But thirty years after reunification, it is finding its stride

In unguarded moments, British and French diplomats 30 years ago might quietly admit that they could happily live with a divided Germany. Its partition, however unjust, contained the problem of a country that, in Henry Kissinger’s words, was “too big for Europe, too small for the world”. After the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, Margaret Thatcher sought to recruit François Mitterrand, France’s president, in a fruitless plot to block, or at least delay, reunification, fearing an enlarged Germany would upset Europe’s balance or even threaten its security. Among European leaders only Felipe González, Spain’s then prime minister, unequivocally backed a united Germany. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Posted by hkarner - 29. September 2020

Date: 28‑09‑2020

Source: The Guardian Timothy Garton Ash

Subject: Since reunification, Germany has had its best 30 years.

The next 30 will be harder

The EU is in the country’s DNA. But global threats mean a strong transatlantic western alliance has never been more vital

Happy birthday, Germany: 30 years old on 3 October, the anniversary of German unification in 1990. But hang on a minute, isn’t Germany 71? Counting, that is, from the foundation of the Federal Republic in 1949. Or 149, if we go back to the first unification of Germany, in 1871? Or 1,220 years old, if we take the coronation of Charlemagne, in 800, to be the beginning of what Germans call the Reich, more widely known as the Holy Roman Empire? Or some 2,000 years, if we detect in the brilliant former FC Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger a remote descendant of those warlike but also proto‑democratic tribesmen that Tacitus described in his Germania?

Answering the apparently simple question “How old is Germany?” is far from simple. But let me venture this bold claim: the last three decades have been the best in all that long and complicated history. If you can think of a better period for the majority of Germans, and their relations with most of their neighbours, I’d be glad to learn of it. In today’s world, roiled by populism, fanaticism and authoritarianism, the Federal Republic is a beacon of stability, civility and moderation – qualities personified by Chancellor Angela Merkel. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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China, Once Germany’s Partner in Growth, Turns Into a Rival

Posted by hkarner - 19. September 2020

Date: 18‑09‑2020

Source: The Wall Street Journal

‘China is not a developing country, not at all. It’s an established, top‑notch manufacturing country’

Employees work at a Herrenknecht facility producing tunnel boring machines in Schwanau, Germany, in May.

An informal partnership that kept Germany’s economy tethered to China’s for decades is unraveling, threatening Berlin’s—and Europe’s—post‑pandemic recovery as the Asian giant stages a powerful comeback.

The relationship that saw Germany provide China with the machines to power its economy helped the German economy recover rapidly after the financial crisis. But German business leaders say the model is no longer working as China turns from partner to rival.

Germany should see its gross domestic product shrink by between 5.8% and 7.1% this year according to German public‑ and private‑sector economists—better than most other Western economies but much worse than China’s expected 2.5% growth. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Germany’s bail‑out brings worries about its long‑term effects

Posted by hkarner - 18. September 2020

Date: 17‑09‑2020

Source: The Economist

Has the state been too generous?

GERMANY’S FAMED Kurzarbeitergeld programme, which funnels government cash to workers whose hours are cut by employers, is the “gold standard” of furlough schemes, reckons the IMF. It has been widely imitated across Europe by governments seeking to protect jobs and incomes from the full ravages of covid‑19 lockdowns. In Germany, under relaxed criteria introduced in March that were extended to nearly 7m workers, it has limited the rise in unemployment to around 600,000 and kept consumer spending buoyant.

The extraordinary rescue package assembled by Angela Merkel’s government, which also included bridging loans to firms and a suspension of fiscal rules to allow stimulus spending, was broadly endorsed by Germany’s economic establishment. It has fuelled a more robust recovery than elsewhere in Europe. But two recent decisions have seen that consensus start to fray. The first was an extension of Kurzarbeitergeld payments to 24 months. The second was a further moratorium on Germany’s strict obligation on overly indebted companies to declare bankruptcy. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Banken in der Coronakrise: „Das dicke Ende steht noch aus“

Posted by hkarner - 4. September 2020

Bafin-Chef Felix Hufeld warnt, dass den Banken die größten Belastungen in der Coronakrise noch bevorstehen. Nicht alle Institute werden überleben.

Andreas Kröner Michael Maisch

02.09.2020 Update: 02.09.2020 – 18:01 Uhr Kommentieren

Felix Hufeld auf dem Banken-Gipfel des Handelsblatts

Der Bafin-Chef rechnet damit, dass die Kapitalpuffer der Banken durch Kreditausfälle deutlich schrumpfen werden.

Frankfurt Für die deutschen Banken hat die Coronakrise gerade erst begonnen. Die Finanzaufsicht und auch die Institute selbst stellen sich auf eine lange Durststrecke für die Wirtschaft ein, mit gravierenden Folgeschäden für die Banken. „Wir werden nicht schmerzfrei aus dieser Sache herauskommen, so viel steht fest“, sagte der Chef der deutschen Finanzaufsicht Bafin, Felix Hufeld, auf dem Banken-Gipfel des Handelsblatts. Für die Bankenbranche in Gänze seien die Belastungen durch die Krise zwar verkraftbar, sagte Hufeld, der in der Wirecard-Affäre selbst erheblich unter Druck geraten ist, „aber wir machen uns schon Sorgen um die 20 bis 30 schwächsten Institute. Das dicke Ende steht noch aus.“

Deutsche-Bank-Chef Christian Sewing hält eine neue Bankenkrise auf Sicht der nächsten zwölf bis 18 Monate zwar für sehr unwahrscheinlich. Aber wenn die Coronakrise sich noch mehrere Jahre hinziehe, dann würden die Folgeschäden auch auf die Banken durchschlagen, räumte der Banker ein.

Zudem hat Sewing die Sorge, dass sich viele Firmen nicht schnell genug an die Welt nach Corona anpassen. Wenn jedes sechste Unternehmen in Deutschland durch Rettungsgelder und faktisch ausgesetzte Insolvenzmeldungen ein ‚Zombie‘ wird, dann hätte das gravierende Auswirkungen auf die Produktivität unserer Volkswirtschaft.“

Auch auf die Banken steigt der Druck, ihre Geschäftsmodelle zu überarbeiten. Dabei dürfte man keine Zeit verlieren, sagte Sparkassen-Präsident Helmut Schleweis. Für alle laute die Devise: „Don‘t walk, run.“ Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Whatever the question, the answer is Germany

Posted by hkarner - 28. August 2020

Date: 27‑08‑2020

Source: The Economist: Bagehot

Even the British right has got the Teutonic bug

“Why the Germans do it better”—the title of a new book by John Kampfner, a respected journalist—speaks volumes about the current state of the British psyche. The government is replacing Public Health England, the body that was supposed to stop Britons from dying of covid‑19, with a new outfit modelled on the Robert Koch Institute, the body at the centre of Germany’s public‑health system. James Kirkup, head of the centrist Social Market Foundation, says his aim is to “make Britain more like Germany”. Other thinkers are less explicit, but pore over the details of Germany’s technical‑education system or social‑insurance market.

That Britain should turn to Germany for ideas is not surprising given the long, binding ties between the two states. Britain imported its royal family from Hanover in 1714 and German‑born Prince Albert did as much as his wife to shape Victorian England. The idea of the welfare state came from Bismarck. The post‑war German constitution was mostly the work of the British and Americans.

Competition combined with closeness means that Britain has a long‑standing weakness for “Germans do it better” arguments. Before the first world war advocates of national efficiency insisted that Britain needed to invest more in science and education to escape being crushed by the German chariot. From the 1960s, left‑wingers urged that Britain should learn from Germany’s model of stakeholder capitalism. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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