Der Euro als Triebfeder des deutschen Exports?

The excessive accumulation of debt especially in the southern member states currently challenges European Monetary Union (EMU). Whereas for a long time, preventing a break-up of EMU was indisputable, in the meantime, voices were being raised claiming a withdrawal of Greece from the currency union. Especially in Germany, a withdrawal of individual members from the currency union (or even a complete break-up of EMU) is associated with economic disadvantages. Particularly, it is argued that EMU is of greatest utility for Germany due to the countries’ longstanding wage moderation and strong export orientation. Against this background, this paper analyzes the effects of a withdrawal of individual member states from the currency union on German exports. Thereby, it is assumed that a withdrawal of those countries from EMU would be accompanied by real devaluations. As the analyses show, the impact of a withdrawal of Ireland, Greece, Spain and Portugal from the currency union on German exports would be rather small. However, since European Monetary Union as a whole is still the most important foreign market for German manufacturers, a complete break-up of EMU could noticeably weaken German export performance.

01. September 2011

Authors Götz Zeddies

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