German exports fell due to weak demand from EU countries. Along with a dire German poverty report.

Graham Charles Lear
4 min readJul 4, 2022


Germany’s exporters did surprisingly worse business in May than in the previous month. However, exports to Russia increased despite the sanctions.

Jul 4, 2022, at 9:26 source: ZEIT ONLINE, Reuters

German exports fell surprisingly in May due to weaker demand from the EU countries. They were 0.5 per cent lower than in April, according to the Federal Statistical Office. Experts had previously expected higher growth.

Accordingly, most exports in May went to the USA. 5.7 per cent more goods were exported there than in the previous month, taking them to a value of 13.4 billion euros. Exports to the People’s Republic of China increased by only 0.5 per cent to 8.7 billion euros. Exports to Great Britain shrank by 2.5 per cent to 5.8 billion euros, while those to the EU countries fell by 2.8 per cent to 67.5 billion euros.

Exports to Russia rose by 29.4 per cent month-on-month to 1.0 billion euros in May, despite sanctions against the country following the attack on Ukraine and measures to restrict exports. In March and April, they had fallen significantly. Imports from the country decreased compared to the previous month by 9.8 per cent to 3.3 billion euros. Russia mainly supplies raw materials and energy.


Poverty in Germany is dire.

The need in Germany is greater than ever — an expert attacks the federal government

Poverty in Germany has reached a new high. Social organizations are sounding the alarm. Inflation requires new relief packages — and at least 100 euros more Hartz IV.

Berlin — There are numbers that are shocking — at least from the point of view of the Paritätischer Wohlfahrtsverband. The poverty rate in Germany has risen to a new high. In 2021, 16.6 per cent of the population had no secure livelihood. That corresponds to almost 14 million people. Compared to the pre-pandemic period, this is an increase of 600,000 people. This emerges from the “Poverty Report 2022”, which the association presented on Wednesday in Berlin.

The findings are shocking, the economic effects of the pandemic are now having a full impact,” CEO Ulrich Schneider told journalists. Poverty has never spread so rapidly in recent times as during the pandemic. In rich industrialized countries like Germany, those who have to make do with less than 60 percent of the median income are considered to be at risk of poverty.

Poverty among those in employment increased unusually sharply, with the self-employed increasing the poverty rate from nine to 13 per cent. High levels were also registered among pensioners with a poverty rate of almost 18 per cent and among children and young people at around 21 per cent.

Poverty in Germany: Social organizations sound the alarm

What gives the data additional explosiveness: The currently dynamic price development is not yet reflected in the figures. The situation threatens to worsen further. Social organizations are already sounding the alarm. “Politicians must stop distributing money with the watering can and provide targeted support where the need is greatest,” said Vdc poverty expert Margret Böwe from IPPEN.MEDIA. The Vdc is Germany’s largest social association.

So far, the traffic light coalition has relieved: However, households with high incomes have also benefited from it — keyword energy price flat rate or fuel discount. Too little is being done for people on basic security. “With Hartz IV, there should be at least a monthly crisis premium of 100 euros,” said Böwe.

The ideas of the Paritätischer Wohlfahrtsverband go in a similar direction. Managing Director Schneider is demanding a targeted relief package for low-income households from the federal government. The fact is that the currently high inflation is mainly affecting people with little money. As the Federal Statistical Office announced on Wednesday, the price dynamics in Germany weakened somewhat in June — but with an increase of 7.6 per cent compared to the previous year, they are still at a very high level.

Poverty in Germany — and millions of households are threatened with high back payments

It is primarily energy and food prices that are driving inflation. For electricity and gas alone, millions of households are threatened with high additional payments this year. Vdc expert Böwe calls on politicians to completely take over the rising energy costs in basic security and Hartz IV . In addition, the housing benefit would have to be increased accordingly in order to also support people who have an income but cannot make ends meet with it.

And the funding? “It must not fail because of the money,” said Böwe from IPPEN.MEDIA. There are also winners of the crisis who could be taxed more heavily. Another idea: the wealth levy . But the traffic light coalition fends them off — under pressure from the FDP .



Graham Charles Lear

What is life without a little controversy in it? Quite boring and sterile would be my answer.