BERLIN/PARIS |

BERLIN/PARIS (Own report) - The top companies of the German economy have built up a liquidity reserve of more than 100 billion euros and now prepare new takeover offensives in competing nation states after strengthening their own basis of capital resources. This is the result of a study of German company analysts recently published. The profits have mainly been made in the export business and verify the lasting German dominance in the European Union that goes at the expense of other national economies. An additional study forecasts that the German industrial locations will win considerable competitiveness in the next five years while at the same time the European neighbours - especially Great Britain and Italy - will have to suffer heavy losses. The German self-assessments terminate years of lamentation according to which the national basic conditions hinder the upswing of the production and reduce viable profit margins. Such announcements have been taken at face value not only in Paris, but also in London, and provide tactic signals, given the numbers now available. more…

DÜSSELDORF |

DÜSSELDORF (Own report) - In taking over NRE Energy, the fifth largest energy supplier in the Netherlands, the German company E.ON AG continues to expand. The acquisition which was completed a few days ago occurs ahead of an attack on the British market and allows the Düsseldorf company to take on a new dimension: E.ON wants to become the leading electricity and gas group world-wide. The German company succeeded in taking up a strategic position on the energy market in eastern Europe. Consequently, E.ON dominates the energy supply from the Caspian Basin in major transit states. Whether Russian resources are being skimmed off, the German company is still in a leading position. With regards to companies in the West, E.ON wants to take over the company Scottish Power and is therefore setting aside approximately 20 billion euros for this acquisition. The breach against Great Britain is not just of economic importance; Berlin is also binding political interests with the energy business which is making London dependent on it. more…

BERLIN/BRUSSELS/TRIPOLIS/MINSK | | libyenbelarus

BERLIN/BRUSSELS/TRIPOLIS/MINSK (Independent report) - The Berlin Interior Ministry wants to set up detention camps for refugees in central Africa, as well as in eastern Europe. It also wants to extend the current admission strategy on an international basis. This is confirmed by strategy papers of the Berlin Federal Ministry of the Interior and the European Commission. They are thinking of establishing such detention camps in Tanzania, as well as in the Ukraine, Moldava and Belarus. Poverty-stricken refugees are supposed to be gathered in the camps, known as holding centres which supposedly provide protection measures, before possible entry into European core states. There they are checked for their use in the economy and subsequently transferred to either the low-wage European sector, or deported back to their own country of origin. Respective pilot projects ("regional protection programs") are supposed to be evaluated in 2007. According to a statement by the German Interior Minister currently in Office, the intentions borne by Brussels also correspond to "my suggestions greatly in context and direction." German-foreign-policy.com publishes extracts from the strategy papers. more…

BERLIN/MOSCOW | | russische-foederation

BERLIN/MOSCOW (Independent report) - The contracts prepared for today's visit of the Russian president to Berlin, concerning the construction of a pipeline running under the Baltic Sea, assure the strong position of German companies in the supply of natural gas to Europe. As a result, this has lead to anxiety within several neighbouring countries. Warsaw fears the return of a German-Russian alliance policy similar to that which strangled Poland many times in the last few centuries. Western European energy groups have shown astonishment over, what until now, has been participation by exclusively German companies in the pipeline project which is seen as strategic relevance in securing a natural gas supply for the whole of Europe. Receiving natural gas from Russian resources is one of 3 pillars which is favoured in a paper from the European Union to secure the European energy supply. Plans in Brussels "for an expanded European Union, their neighbours and partner states", are of the assumption that Russian supplies will simply be an addition to imports from North Africa, the Middle East and the Caspian Sea region. Germany is in the favourable situation of being able to renounce such diversifications if need be. more…

BERLIN/PARIS/VIENNA |

BERLIN/PARIS/VIENNA (Independent Report) - Hartmut Mehdorn, head of the German Railways (Deutsche Bahn AG) is resolute in inhibiting the use of the railways stations to commemorate the children deported by the National Socialists. As a result, he has rejected the conciliatory offer made by a high-ranking delegation. The correspondence in question has been made available to the editor. According to this correspondence, Mehdorn refused to meet the Central Council of Jews in Germany, the chairman of the German Confederation of Trade Unions (DGB) the Hessen and Thüringen district, as well as several survivors from the concentration camps in Auschwitz and Theresienstadt. In a personal encounter to come up with a mutual solution, those snubbed, put forward a proposal for a place where an exhibition could be held for the children who were deported to Auschwitz, via the German railway system. The French organisation "Fils et Filles des Dèporteès Juifs de France" said it would hold the exhibition, in an offer made to the German Railways. More than 10,000 victims were smuggled in cattle wagons from the German State Railways (Deutsche Reichsbahn); one of the destinations being Auschwitz. Amongst these victims were more than 500 children from Germany and more than 100 children from Austria. The rejection of the delegation has caused consternation in many Jewish communities of the Federal Republic and from the intiative "Eleven Thousand Children" (Elftausend Kinder). more…