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The year 1994

The development of the global economy was characterised by the revival of the economy in North America, Western Europe and Japan, the strong growth of the economies of the threshold countries and low material prices as well as falling economic capacities, as was seen in Africa or in individual countries of the Eastern European “reform” states where industrial production fell considerably. This saw the global economy rising by 3.7 percent, a figure not seen at any time in the previous 5 to 6 years.

In Germany, a slow recovery followed on from the far-reaching effects of the crisis. Brisk demand from abroad and the sound economic situation in the construction trade were the main reason for gross domestic product once again increasing by 2.9 percent. In Western Germany, there was a noticeable increase of 7.7 percent in export demand, with companies increasing their capital investment by 1.2 percent. The progress being made with privatisation and the considerable public transfer payments from west to east drove forward the catch-up process in Eastern Germany. The construction sector recorded 25.4 percent and the production sector 16.9 percent more orders than in 1993. Nevertheless, throughout the entire territory of Germany as a whole, unemployment was still giving grounds for concern (with statistics showing 3.7 million people out of work) along with the numerous company collapses (with the Germany-wide figure of companies hit possibly in the region of 25,000). At the end of the year, the chemicals industry returned a split report. Whilst the increase of 6.4 percent in sales signalled the end of the crisis, rationalisation strategies were resulting in a further fall in the number of people in employment, with this figure falling from 654,800 to 561,000 in the chemicals sector between 1992 and 1994. Germany's mechanical engineering sector returned a similar picture, profiting from the pickup in the economy at home and abroad and increasing its sales by 2.3 percent, while reducing its workforce from 1.12 million (1993) to 947,700 at the end of the year.

Annual report 1994 (German)