The number of migrants in Germany has reached a new all-time high: Some 42 percent of children are already from migrant backgrounds, and in total migrants make up a significant 25,5 percent of the population.
The German Federal Statistical Office’s most recent report revealed there were now 20,8 million German residents who come from migrant backgrounds, the Austrian daily Kronen Zeitung reported. “Foreign-born” children are defined as a child having at least one foreign-born parent.
The main motivation for migrants moving to the country in 48 percent of the responses, was family reunification, also known as chain migration.
Just over half or 52 percent, now hold a German passport, while the other 48 percent are citizens of foreign countries. The report noted that 13,5 million German residents were immigrants.
A further 19 percent say they moved to Germany because they were looking for work, while 15 percent arrived as asylum seekers. Only five percent said they came to Germany for education. At least half of the asylum seekers were from the Middle East.
The figures show a massive increase in migrant-background residents since last year when the Federal stats office reported that there were 19,3 million residents with a migration background.
Not only mass migration has been a major factor in the rapid demographic changes in Germany, but also the hundreds of thousands of Germans that emigrate each year. In 2017, almost a quarter of a million Germans left their country of birth.
Frankfurt became the first German city where native Germans were a minority in 2017. Several other German cities have seen major demographic shifts too, including Offenbach, Heilbronn, Sindelfingen and Pforzheim, where native Germans are a minority. In Offenbach, only 37 percent of the population are native Germans.
Several other major German cities will soon follow: Nuremberg, where migrant residents make up 44,6 percent of the inhabitants, as well as Stuttgart, where they make up 44,1 percent and Munich with 43,2 percent, will see Germans in the minority in the not too distant future.
In Stuttgart, some 60 percent of those under 18 come from a migrant family. At least 42 percent of children under the age of six have a migrant background.
This huge demographic shift has coincided with a struggling economy. According to the Ifo Business Climate Index, the German economy is on the threshold of recession. In August, the survey barometer fell for the fifth time in a row — from 95,8 points in July to 94,3 points now. This is the lowest value since November 2012.
“The signs of a recession in Germany are increasing,” said Ifo President Clemens Fuest. Especially in manufacturing, the descent is “unstoppable”. According to Fuest: “There were no bright spots in any of the key German industries.” There was “a similar pessimism” as in the crisis year of 2009. There were also declines in the services sector, in trade and in the construction industry.
Gross domestic product shrank by 0,1 percent in the second quarter of 2019. With a decline in the third quarter, economists are already talking about a “technical recession”. As soon as two consecutive quarters of decline appear, economists speak of a “technical” recession.
Most recently, the president of the Federal Association of German Industry (BDI), Dieter Kempf, accused the Federal Government of having an anti-business policy. “Government policy harms companies. It is difficult for us to see a clear economic policy course in the work of the Federal Government,” he said.
At the same time Kempf said that German industry urgently need skilled workers — “no matter where they come from”. Kempf then blamed the AfD too, saying the electoral successes of the AfD not only damaged the image of the country, but also the attractiveness of Germany as a business location. Kempf warned against voting for the AFD in the state elections in Saxony and Brandenburg.
It may be possible for many politicians to accuse of the AfD of many things, but certainly not that the party is anti-industrial. It is in fact even very industry-friendly and therefore the opposite of the Greens. But somehow, certain corporate managers, due to their natural opportunism, think that they have to come to terms with a climate apocalypse once they seek public attention.
About 1,2 million jobs remain empty in Germany, according to the Federal Labour Office, from lorry drivers to carpenters and care workers. The manufacturing PMI (which includes industry, construction and energy) is at crisis levels, below the eurozone average.
If Germany and the eurozone slipped into recession this year or next, the ECB would hardly be able to take effective countermeasures. Interest rates are already at zero, and additional money printing can only help superficially and temporarily, but will cause greater consequential damage. Above all, the German export sector is being unhealthily inflated by the soft-currency euro — with the result of a fatal economic dependence on the world market and world trade.
The share of exports in GDP has doubled since the introduction of the euro in 1999. This also makes Germany the main European victim of the American trade war against China. The days when the US Federal Reserve still coordinated with the Bundesbank, and the German position with the US government still had weight, are long gone.
The reasons for the economic downturn are many. The electoral successes of the AfD played no role, however. A new party cannot cause or prevent such a serious economic downturn. It has been the responsibility of mainstream politicians in the established parties — and people such as Kempf himself.