German 2010 growth fastest since reunification

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German 2010 growth fastest since reunification

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Germany’s economy rebounded last year at its fastest pace since reunification two decades ago.

However consumer spending stayed modest with just a 0.5 percent increase which was disappointing news for the region’s struggling economies hoping to boost their exports to Germany.

Gross domestic product grew by 3.6 percent – bouncing back from a 4.7 percent slump in 2009.

Economy Minister Rainer Bruederle said: “We grew twice as fast as the European Union average,” adding the figures show “people are rightly looking optimistically into the future.”

The Deputy Finance Minister Steffen Kampeter said that Germany’s success should show the euro zone that tight policy can help growth.

Driving the strong recovery was major growth in exports as the world economy started to recover. Exports rose 14.2 percent, though imports surged 13 percent.

The public sector deficit came in at 3.5 percent of GDP, that was a touch higher than expected and compared to three percent in 2009.

Separate data showing industrial output in the euro zone grew twice as fast as expected in November offered a glimmer of hope the rest of the currency bloc might soon catch up.