Germany ranks among the top ten in the world as a recipient of foreign direct investment (FDI), according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
European stocks at the top
According to official Bundesbank (“German Central Bank”) statistics for 2019, around sixty percent (or EUR 326 billion) of all FDI stocks in Germany originate from within the European Union, with a further nine per cent stemming from the remaining European non-EU countries. Investments from outside the EU continue to grow. North America accounts for 19 percent of FDI stock, while Asia holds an eleven percent share. Especially Asian countries increased their FDI stocks in Germany in recent years. Germany is the world’s largest recipient of new Chinese FDI projects.
Ongoing interest in greenfield investments
Between 2015 and 2020, fDi Markets recorded more than 7,200 investment projects in Germany by some 5,700 foreign companies. In 2020 more than 1,000 projects were noted down, making it a slightly weaker year due to the pandemic. However Germany is still placed third worldwide in terms of FDI projects attracted. FDI results are based on greenfield project announcements (including expansions and joint ventures) collected in the Financial Times Group's fDi Markets database.
The most important countries as sources for new investment projects are the USA (19 percent of all investment projects since 2015), Switzerland (eleven percent) as well as the UK (nine percent) and China (six percent). The ICT & software industry, and business & financial services are leading sectors in attracting new projects. The industrial machinery & equipment, textiles, consumer goods, and chemical industries are likewise attractive foreign investment sectors in Germany.
Most new projects open sales and marketing & support offices. One in seven investment projects is a manufacturing site or R&D-facility – making Germany a very important business location.