International Education



Germany Education

Location: Central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark
Geographic coordinates: 51 00 N, 9 00 E
Map references: Europe
total: 357, 021 sq km
land: 349, 223 sq km
water: 7, 798 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Montana
Land boundaries:
total: 3, 621 km
border countries: Austria 784 km, Belgium 167 km, Czech Republic 646 km, Denmark 68 km, France 451 km, Luxembourg 138 km, Netherlands 577 km, Poland 456 km, Switzerland 334 km
Coastline: 2, 389 km
Maritime claims:
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm
Climate: temperate and marine; cool, cloudy, wet winters and summers; occasional warm foehn wind
Terrain: lowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in south
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Freepsum Lake -2 m
highest point: Zugspitze 2, 963 m
Natural resources: iron ore, coal, potash, timber, lignite, uranium, copper, natural gas, salt, nickel, arable land
Land use:
arable land: 33%
permanent crops: 1%
permanent pastures: 15%
forests and woodland: 31%
other: 20% (1993 est.)
Irrigated land: 4, 750 sq km (1993 est.)
Natural hazards: flooding

Environment - current issues: emissions from coal-burning utilities and industries contribute to air pollution; acid rain, resulting from sulfur dioxide emissions, is damaging forests; pollution in the Baltic Sea from raw sewage and industrial effluents from rivers in eastern Germany; hazardous waste disposal; government currently attempting to define mechanism for ending the use of nuclear power; government working to meet EU commitment to identify nature preservation areas in line with the EU's Flora, Fauna, and Habitat directive
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
Geography - note: strategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea

Background: As Western Europe's richest and most populous nation, Germany remains a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed the country in two devastating World Wars in the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key Western economic and security organizations, the EC and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German unification in 1990. Since then Germany has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries formed a common European currency, the euro.
Population: 82, 797, 408 (July 2000 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 16% (male 6, 679, 930; female 6, 333, 110)
15-64 years: 68% (male 28, 638, 814; female 27, 693, 630)
65 years and over: 16% (male 5, 133, 121; female 8, 318, 803) (2000 est.)
Population growth rate: 0.29% (2000 est.)
Birth rate: 9.35 births/1, 000 population (2000 est.)
Death rate: 10.49 deaths/1, 000 population (2000 est.)
Net migration rate: 4.01 migrant(s)/1, 000 population (2000 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.62 male(s)/female
total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2000 est.)
Infant mortality rate: 4.77 deaths/1, 000 live births (2000 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 77.44 years
male: 74.3 years
female: 80.75 years (2000 est.)
Total fertility rate: 1.38 children born/woman (2000 est.)
noun: German(s)
adjective: German
Ethnic groups: German 91.5%, Turkish 2.4%, other 6.1% (made up largely of Serbo-Croatian, Italian, Russian, Greek, Polish, Spanish)
Religions: Protestant 38%, Roman Catholic 34%, Muslim 1.7%, unaffiliated or other 26.3%
Languages: German
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99% (1977 est.)
male: NA%
female: NA%
Telephones - main lines in use: NA; 46.5 million main lines are installed (July 1999)
Telephones - mobile cellular: 15.318 million (April 1999)
Telephone system: Germany has one of the world's most technologically advanced telecommunications systems; as a result of intensive capital expenditures since reunification, the formerly backward system of the eastern part of the country has been modernized and integrated with that of the western part
domestic: Germany is served by an extensive system of automatic telephone exchanges connected by modern networks of fiber-optic cable, coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, and a domestic satellite system; cellular telephone service is widely available and includes roaming service to many foreign countries
international: satellite earth stations - 14 Intelsat (12 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian Ocean), 1 Eutelsat, 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic Ocean region), 2 Intersputnik (1 Atlantic Ocean region and 1 Indian Ocean region); 7 submarine cable connections; 2 HF radiotelephone communication centers; tropospheric scatter links
Radio broadcast stations: AM 51, FM 767, shortwave 4 (1998)
Radios: 77.8 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations: 9, 513 (including repeaters) (1998)
Televisions: 51.4 million (1998)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 625 (1999)
total: 40, 826 km including at least 14, 253 km electrified and 14, 768 km double- or multiple-tracked (1998)
note: since privatization in 1994, Deutsche Bahn AG (DBAG) no longer publishes details of the tracks it owns; in addition to the DBAG system there are 102 privately owned railway companies which own an approximate 3, 000 km to 4, 000 km of the total tracks
total: 656, 140 km
paved: 650, 891 km (including 11, 400 km of expressways)
unpaved: 5, 249 km (all-weather) (1998 est.)
Waterways: 7, 500 km (1999); major rivers include the Rhine and Elbe; Kiel Canal is an important connection between the Baltic Sea and North Sea
Pipelines: crude oil 2, 500 km (1998)
Ports and harbors: Berlin, Bonn, Brake, Bremen, Bremerhaven, Cologne, Dresden, Duisburg, Emden, Hamburg, Karlsruhe, Kiel, Lubeck, Magdeburg, Mannheim, Rostock, Stuttgart
Merchant marine:
total: 475 ships (1, 000 GRT or over) totaling 6, 395, 990 GRT/8, 014, 132 DWT
ships by type: bulk 2, cargo 181, chemical tanker 12, container 239, liquified gas 2, multi-functional large load carrier 5, passenger 2, petroleum tanker 8, rail car carrier 2, refrigerated cargo 2, roll-on/roll-off 13, short-sea passenger 7 (1999 est.)
Airports: 615 (1999 est.)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 320
over 3, 047 m: 14
2, 438 to 3, 047 m: 61
1, 524 to 2, 437 m: 67
914 to 1, 523 m: 56
under 914 m: 122 (1999 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 295
over 3, 047 m: 2
2, 438 to 3, 047 m: 6
1, 524 to 2, 437 m: 6
914 to 1, 523 m: 55
under 914 m: 226 (1999 est.)
Heliports: 59 (1999 est.)

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