IN FOCUS / 2016-08-10
Only slight decrease in the number of school beginners lately
In the first Länder school has started again after the summer holidays. Hundreds of thousands of first graders will have had their first day at school by mid-September. According to provisional results, approximately 709,000 children started school in Germany in the past school year of 2015/2016. Compared with a year earlier, the number of school beginners declined by 0.3%.
The number of children starting school did not decline as markedly as population figures had suggested at the end of 2014. According to these figures, the number of children of school entry age was down 2.8% in the whole of Germany at the end of 2014 from a year earlier. The decline in the number of school beginners was probably slowed down, among other factors, by increased immigration in 2015.
On the whole, however, the number of school beginners fell sharply over the last few years due to demographic change. In school year 2005/2006 there had still been 822,000 school beginners. In comparison, their numbers were down by 14% in 2015/2016.
IN FOCUS / 2016-07-25
Foreign Trade: Turkey major importer of motor vehicles and machinery
After the failed coup attempt in Turkey, German enterprises are concerned about consequences for foreign trade. Turkey is a major importer especially for the automotive industry and manufacturers of machinery and equipment.
In 2015, Turkey was one of Germany's 20 major trading partners. According to provisional results, goods to the total value of 36.9 billion euros were traded between the two countries. Exports from Germany amounted to 22.4 billion euros. Among the major importers, Turkey ranked even higher than countries such as Russia, South Korea and Japan.
Major export goods included motor vehicles, trailers and semi-trailers (6.4 billion euros) and machinery (4.3 billion euros). Exports of these two groups of goods to Turkey accounted for roughly 3%, respectively, of total German exports of those goods. Imports from Turkey amounted to approximately 14.5 billion euros. Clothing was by far the most significant good imported (3.3 billion euros).
Current WISTA edition: the (un)certainties of population projections
Official population projections are often criticised for not taking account of current demographic developments, for instance, the rapidly increasing immigration of people seeking refuge in 2015.
Such criticism ignores the fact that these population projections roll forward statistically well-based demographic structures rather than providing forecasts or visions of the future.
In her article on The (un)certainties of population projections published in issue 4/2016 of our WISTA scientific journal, Olga Pötzsch illustrates this conflict. She compares the assumptions and results of the last few projections with one another and shows their opportunities and constraints.