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Euro to celebrate 15th anniversary

The euro is celebrating its 15th birthday on New Year's Day after going through five testing years in economic crisis. From Monday to Friday, CCTV will bring you a series of reports on the Eurozone's outlook, the new member states' journey ahead and key economies' state of play. We start with the region's biggest economy, Germany, where exports contribute to more than half of economic growth.

Fifteen years ago, many German citizens were bitterly saying goodbye to the Deutsch mark. Now that bitterness has turned sweet.

"Since we adopted the euro, Hamburg's handling capacity has grown rapidly. Although the volume of cargo grew more slowly from 2008, the port's handling capacity has been increasing steadily, if we look at the 15-year span," said Axel Mattern, chairman of Port of Hamburg Marketing.

As Germany's largest port, Hamburg expects to handle more than 140 million tons of goods in 2013, almost twice as much as in 1998. The port's marketing team says its transferring of goods has also sped up after adopting the euro.

"I think German has been a beneficiary of the European integration. Our productivity has gone up and unemployment rate down. Germany is a competitive country and has a leading position in international trade," Mattern said.

But the adoption of the euro wasn't without costs. The country experienced higher prices in some services and commodities. There are also grumbles from fellow Eurozone countries that Germany was the biggest winner from joining the single currency bloc.

The German statistics office shows one third of the country's exports takes place within the Eurozone.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 31Dec13]

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small logoThis document has been published on 02Jan14 by the Equipo Nizkor and Derechos Human Rights. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.