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German Chancellor Scholz holds a press conference in Berlin


Germany’s economic woes could further fuel the far right

Germany is known for being Europe’s economic powerhouse and, as such, is hugely influential in shaping the EU’s finance policies, which makes its economic woes of late worrying.

Deutschland has been in a technical recession since the beginning of 2023. It currently has the second-lowest growth rate among EU countries, and with the decline being driven by lackluster domestic demand combined with depressed demand for exports in key markets like China, that doesn’t look set to change anytime soon. The once-strong manufacturing sector is being crippled by high energy prices together with high labor costs, which is pushing companies to relocate overseas in droves.

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The Graphic Truth: What do Europeans think of their economy?

Consumers’ perceptions of the economy can cause big shake-ups in European politics. After the sovereign debt crisis (2012-2015), and the subsequent migrant crisis, many Europeans became more susceptible to eurosceptic, populist messages. The effects of the war in Ukraine are being felt acutely in the European Union. The energy sector is in a tailspin, driving fuel prices through the roof. Many analysts say that Europe is experiencing a cost of living crisis. Unsurprisingly, Europeans are gloomier about the state of the economy than at any time since the 2008 recession. We take a look at perceptions of the economy in the EU over the past 22 years.

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