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The Federal Republic of Germany is a parliamentary republic headed by a chancellor and a president. It comprises sixteen states (Bundesländer). Each state has its own state constitution, and is largely autonomous concerning its internal organisation. The most prosperous states are Bayern and Baden Württemberg in the southern part of the country. GDP per capita in these states are about 15% higher than the German average. The dynamism of the area is largely due to its sector specialisation. Manufacturing production makes up around 30% of production, and is concentrated in hi-tech industries.

With 83 million inhabitants the Federal Republic of Germany is the leading economy in the Eurozone both in population terms and its share of Eurozone GDP (more than one third). GDP per head is 20% above the Eurozone average, making it one of the most prosperous Eurozone countries. Germany is the world’s fourth largest economic power after the US, Japan and China, and the third largest exporter after China and the US.

The manufacturing sector plays a vital role in the economy. It accounts for almost 20% of employment and contributes almost a quarter of total value added. However, industry’s central role makes Germany’s economy more cyclical than some of its neighbours