French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi-Aventis hired 500 employees in its expanded industrial park in Frankfurt-Höchst. In the town of Eisleben, Germany, Swiss bakery goods producer Aryzta built a large bakery that employs 295 people. And Britain’s largest online dealer for household equipment, AO World, is transferring its European headquarters to Bergheim, a city near Cologne.
These are three of 763 projects in Germany funded by foreign investors. For them, the continent’s largest economy has become one of the three most attractive business locations in the world — and by far the top in Europe. After two years of decline, the number of jobs created in Germany by foreign investors rose in 2014 by 9 percent to 11,300.
That is according to international accounting company Ernst Young (EY), which used its company databank and a survey of executives at 808 international companies.
The findings, which have been obtained by Handelsblatt, show 21 percent of managers named Germany when asked about the most attractive locations for investments. Worldwide, only China (38 percent) and the United States (35 percent) did better.
The next most popular European country, Britain, was in eighth place (9 percent). In comparison to the previous year, Germany climbed one position.
“Foreign firms are not concerned with where they receive the highest subsidies and pay the lowest taxes,” said EY’s Peter Englisch, who oversaw the study. If that were the case, Germany would not be the top choice so often.