External sector

External sector statistics provide information on a country’s economic relationships with the rest of the world. The data on external transactions and stocks form an important basis for economic policy decisions.

Time series
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Balance of payments, international investment position, external debt, external position of the Bundesbank, international reserves, direct investments, external position of non-banks.

International investment position
Germany's international investment position

In the second quarter of 2023, the German net international investment position (i.i.p.) increased by €8 billion to €2.7 trillion; that equates to 69% of gross domestic product (GDP). German claims on non-residents now stand at €12.5 trillion. This compares to German liabilities amounting to €9.8 trillion.

German foreign direct investment in 2021/2022
Major destinations for German direct investors

At the end of 2021, Germany’s primary outward foreign direct investment (FDI) stocks were up 8% on the year at €1,506 billion. Stocks of FDI in Germany show a different picture. A decline was recorded for the first time in a long period, with stocks down 2% to €852 billion. At €169 billion, German FDI flows abroad proved robust for 2022, despite being down slightly on the exceptionally high level of the previous year. By contrast, FDI flows from abroad to Germany almost halved to €44 billion.

Update of the sixth edition of the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6)
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The concepts and methodological standards for compiling external sector statistics are set out in numerous international manuals. These are currently being revised.