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Berlin to go, english edition, 01/2016

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NEWS TO GO A STRONG START TO THE YEAR FOR BERLIN With growing tourist numbers and falling unemployment, the capital is a role model in Germany An economy in good spirits The economic climate in Berlin-Brandenburg is already looking very good at the beginning of 2016. According to a survey conducted by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the economic climate index for the region recently reached 135 points – the highest count since its launch in 1995. The climate index provides information on companies’ current state of business and their outlook for the future. In all sectors, the overall good mood is directly linked to the flourishing business environment. In fact, most companies expect this upbeat economic activity to continue in the coming months. Unemployment down considerably At the end of 2015, Berlin’s unemployment rate reached a historic low. For the first time since 1991, it reached the 10% mark. As recently as November 2011, the rate was at 12.2%. Flourishing revenue stream A new study conducted by the Investitionsbank Berlin shows that congresses and tradeshows are key factors driving the economy in Berlin. Last year, exhibitors and tradeshow visitors spent roughly €1.4 billion while staying in the city. According to the study, €5.10 in additional purchasing power is generated for every €1 in turnover at tradeshows and events in Berlin. Over the course of one year, guests attending everything from the “Green Week” agricultural fair to various doctors’ congresses generated roughly €65 million in tax revenue alone. photos:; Messe Berlin

NEWS TO GO Increased funding for digitization The Senate Department for Economics, Technology and Research recently published new guidelines outlining the parameters of its updated and expanded Transfer BONUS funding program in effect as of 1 January 2016. The updates place the focus firmly on the field of digitization. Berlin companies can now receive a one-time grant of up to €45,000 when cooperating with a scientific institute on a project. By extending the funding program, the Senate Department is looking to encourage small and mediumsized companies to pursue digitization and Industry 4.0. The funding program is carried out by the IBB Business Team GmbH, a 100% subsidiary of the Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB). Applications can be submitted online at the website of Transfer BONUS. Berlin outdoes national average According to an analysis by the Investitionsbank Berlin, Berlin’s gross domestic product will grow by 2.0% in 2016, albeit with a volatile run in the first two quarters (+2.1% and +1.8%). In other words, the capital is set to once again grow at a faster rate than the German average (+1.8%) this year. This outlook was also confirmed by a recent survey of medium-sized companies conducted by the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW). Matching platform brings together companies and projects for refugees Illustration: Till Schermer, photo: Lukas Gojda - Berlin Partner has launched a matching platform called “” (“everyone help now”) designed to encourage the support and integration of refugees. It aims to showcase the capital’s many aid projects and social entrepreneurs. Companies interested in working to help refugees can use the platform to gain an overview of opportunities and support specific projects. This allows help to get to the people who need it faster while also fostering integration. BERLIN TO GO 7

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