For the first time since 2001, foreign investments by the German chemical industry are higher than investments at home, according to data published by the VCI. In 2012, foreign fixed asset investments by German chemical companies rose by some 25 % to 7.7 billion EUR, while domestic investments of Germany’s third largest industry stagnated at 6.3 billion EUR.
Investments by German chemical companies in Asia and Latin America went up by 27 % to 2.6 billion EUR in 2012. In emerging markets the demand for chemical products is rising whereas it is stagnating in Europe.
Investments by the German chemical industry in North America rose by 54 % to around 3.2 billion EUR in 2012. Meanwhile over 41 % of the foreign investments of German chemical businesses go stateside. In 2005 it was just under 28 %. The main underlying reason is the drop in energy and raw material costs in the USA since the start of the boom in shale gas production in 2009. In contrast, raw material and energy costs have risen significantly in Germany, mainly because of the energy transition Energiewende. At present, electricity in Germany is roughly 2.5 times more expensive than in the USA; the gas price is even three times higher.
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