Germany

Statut ITIE Progrès satisfaisants
Joined EITI in 2016
Dernières données de 2016
Latest Validation 2018
Site Internet EITI Germany
Last updated 10 May 2019

Overview

Germany is Europe's largest, and the world's fifth largest economy (CIA World Factbook). The country is one of the biggest commodity consumers worldwide, particularly in terms of mineral resources. 

While generally regarded as a resource-poor country, it has relatively large deposits of lignite, potash and rock salt as well as rocks and soils for the construction industry. Oil and gas are extracted, mainly in North Germany and the North Sea. Lignite is mainly extracted in North-Rhine Westphalia and Brandenburg. 

The extractive industries contribution to Germany's GDP is below 0.2% (2016 EITI Report, for 2015). Extraction holds regional importance because of employment in the open pit mines. Germany-wide, extractive companies in Germany generate sales of around €9.2 billion with 71,000 employees. 

Germany is a federal country and much of the information on licencing is on state level. Non-tax revenues (such as royalites) are paid on the state-level, while the trade tax is paid on municiple level.

Germany uses the EITI:

  • as a place to pull together all decentralised information, through their dedicated website;
  • as a platform to address misunderstandings between the government, civil society and companies on the extractives sector;
  • Internationally, as a way to highlight the environmental and social rules governing the extractives sector, with regulation to be followed prior to any approval for extraction; 
  • to highlight their committment to transparency, accountability and good governance of natural resources.

Concerning extraction, one of the main topics in Germany is the future of brown coal. The government has formed a multi-stakeholder commission (not related to the EITI) to work on a plan on how to move into a low-carbon energy generation while easening the impact it has on the mining regions. 

Extractive industries contribution

  • 0.54 %
    to exports
  • 0.14 %
    to GDP
  • 0.06 %
    to government revenue
  • 0.23 %
    to employment

Approval of mining projects

Germany does not use bidding to obtain mining projects. Getting a mining permit is first and foremost an administrative procedure. To carry out extraction the company needs to present an operating plan, which the government administration checks against the legal requirements (including social and environmental). The operating plan is revised regularly. 

Licenses and contracts

Public inspection of the mining authorsation books and mining maps, which record the authorities' allocations of permits, are available from the regional authorities. Implementation of Germany EITI led to a change in law (§ 76(3) of the BBergG) in 2017, which now allows for the consultation of this data without needing to prove legitimate interest. 

Different States (Länder) present the data on licenses differently. Some have online cadastres (links below), others have excel files. Though considered systemastically disclosed because the data is being collected routinely through government institutions, Germany EITI publishes transfers of licenses and the full list of allocated permits, as this is not yet publicly available across all states. 

Beneficial ownership disclosure

A Transparency Register was established on June 26, 2017 within the framework of the implementation of the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (EU) 2015/849, which requires member states to hold a central register of beneficial owners. As of February 2019, the Transprency Register required the proof of legitimate interest in order to access the information. 

The Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (EU) 2018/843 requires this register to be accessible to the general public without demonstrating legitimate interest. Germany needs to implement this directive by 10 January 2020, when the regulation comes into effect. 

In Germany, family companies (some of which are the country's largest) principally lobbied against public access to beneficial ownership information, the open data organisation present on the German MSG found (open knowlegde foundation). 

Production

Coal

In terms of value of production, brown coal (also called lignite) is the most important natural resource in Germany, in terms of the value of production at EUR 2.3 bn (2016). Around 90% of the lignite Germany produces is used to generate electricity and district heating. 

The three main lignite extraction areas are in the regions of Rhenish (North Rhine-Westphalia), Lausitz (south of Berlin, in Brandenburg) and Central German (Saxony). In Rhenish, the most important mining site, the lignite-mining region covers a 2,500 km2 area to the west of Cologne, operated by RWE Power AG. It is also known as the "Garzweiler lignite mine" and is also the largest mine by surface. In Lausitz, south of Berlin in the state of Brandenburg, LEAG operates extraction on four different sites. It was an important industrial site in the economy of the former German Democratic Republic. 

Stone coal extraction was phased out in December 2018. Subsidies continue to flow towards stone coal to ease the transition for the former mining regions most affected by the closure of the sites.

Initializing chart.

Oil and gas

There were 50 crude oil fields in Germany in 2015. These fields extract oil by means of some 1,000 production wells in drilling installations (onshore) and production platforms (offshore). In 2015, the oilfields of Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony yielded almost 90% of the total German production. The biggest oil extraction site is "Mittelplate", which is operated by DEA Deutsche Erdoel AG, Hamburg.

Oil and gas production

Initializing chart.

Quarried natural resources

Quarried natural resources comprise a great number of mineral deposits, in particular gravel and sands, broken natural stone, lime, marl and dolomite stones and gypsum and anhydrite stones, as well as clays and loams. Quarried natural resources are bulk raw materials. Due to geological conditions, they are site-bound and not distributed evenly across the country. The materials are hused mainly for the construction 

Every year, the building materials and quarrying industry extracts roughly 550 million tons of primary raw materials or uses these materials in production. The building materials and quarrying industry (earth and stone) in Germany comprises some 1,600 companies operating approximately 3,100 extraction facilities. LafargeHolcim-Gruppe is the largest single company in this sector (2016 EITI Report, figure 8).

The local nature of the market for quarried natural resources means that publication on revenues from the sector is sensitive for companies, as it can reveal information on price.

Salts

The EITI in Germany also counts salts as extractive resource. place in Germany in six potash mines (in Hesse, Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia), seven salt mines (in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia) and seven salt works (in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Mecklenburg-Western-Pomerania, Lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia). The salt is used for commercial and industrial salt, for the food and chemical industries. 

Revenue collection

Due to the federal structure of the Federal Republic of Germany, tax administration is split between the Federal Government and the states. Depending on the type of tax, it is levied by the financial authorities of the Federal Government, the states or the local authorities. One exception to this rule is minesite and extraction royalties, which are levied by the mining authorities of the states.

The 2016 EITI Report is the first time that citizens can see what the total contribution of one company is to different tax authorities on different political levels. 

Due to stringent tax confidentiality laws, the companies participating in reconciliation need to grant tax authorities an exemption from tax secrecy (a so-called "waver").

Initializing chart.

Revenue allocation

The Federal state structure of the Federal Republic of Germany is reflected in the distribution of tax revenues. The level which has the authority for the revenues, i.e. how they are distributed between the Federal Government, the states and the municipalities is regulated by Article 106 of the Basic Law (GG), in which a distinction is made between so-called ‘community taxes’ and taxes which flow in their entirety to the municipalities, states or Federal Government. In the case of community taxes, the revenues are shared between the Federal Government and the states.

As per § 3 of the Tax Code, the tax revenues from the extraction of natural resources are not earmarked for a specific purpose; the persons responsible for the Federal Budget, the state budgets and the municipal budgets decide how they will be used. 

The Ministry of Finance (BMF) publishes informationas "open budget", and via the website OffenerHaushalt (link below) you can find the same information for state and municipal level.

The main revenues are generated through extraction and minesite royalites and paid to federal mining authorities. They vary grately, depending on the local mining activity. 

Reconciled revenues by top 5 companies

This graph shows the top five revenue paying companies in Germany, most of which are royalties. 

Social and economic contribution

The Germany extractive industry contribution to the economy and employment is below 1%. However, in some regions the extraction is or has been the main employer, and the government put in place schemes to ease the transition to regions no longer extracting, such as for hard coal.

Policy recommendations and reforms

Public inspection of the mining authorsation books and mining maps, which record the authorities' allocations of permits, are available from the regional authorities. Implementation of Germany EITI led to a change in law (§ 76(3) of the BBergG) in 2017, which now allows for the consultation of this data without needing to prove legitimate interest. 

Innovations

The EITI encourages multi-stakeholder groups to explore innovative approaches to make the EITI more relevant and useful.

The 2016 contextual report was written by the members of the multi-stakeholder group and include chapters that go beyond the Standard and a include information that the public cares about, such as:

Online portal 

Instead of relying on an EITI Report in PDF, Germany EITI published an online portal called "resource transprarency" that publishes the information from the 2016 contextual report, the reconciled figures, as well as links to where more recent information can be found. The website is open for re-use, the code is available on GitHub.

They have made scores of data available in open data format (see "explore data") and are planning to upload the EITI datasets from reconciliation to the German open data government platform.

Implementation

Germany has asked for early Validation and has gotten approval from the Board regarding the choice of materiality threshold. See Board decisions related to Germany.

Germany lodged an EITI candidature application on 22 December 2015. The application is available here (and listed below). The application is being considered by the EITI Board and a decision is expected in early 2016.

At its meeting on 10 June 2015, which was attended by the Special Representative Mr Beckmeyer, the D-EITI Multi-Stakeholder Group agreed on the objectives for EITI implementation in Germany.

On 10 March 2015 the German Federal Government formed a multi-stakeholder group, to be based on equal representation.

On 2 July 2014 the Cabinet of the German Federal Government announced its committment for full implementation of the EITI, the global Standard for transparency of government revenues from natural resources. Uwe Beckmeyer, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, was appointed Special Representative for D-EITI. 

Governance

Oliver Wittke, parliamentary state secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie, or BMWi) has been the Champion of the EITI since April 2018. 

The EITI Champion is supported by the International Raw Materials Policy Division of the BMWi. This unit is responsible for EITI implementation. The MSG is chaired by department head for industrial policy, Winfried Horstmann. His alternate and National Coordinator, Andrea Jünemann, is head of division for international raw materials policy. She is also the spokesperson for the government constituency.

To manage the nation Secretariat the BMWi has contracted Germany’s technical assistance agency, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). This is mainly due GIZ’s longstanding experience with the EITI through technical support in other implementing countries.

Timeline

Validation

Germany's Validation against the Standard commenced in November 2018, as Germany had requested an early Validation. On 8 May 2019, the Board agreed that Germany has made satisfactory overall progress in implementing the Standard.

Progress by requirement

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