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German exports rebound in July

German exports rebound in July

FRANKFURT AM MAIN, Sept 9: Exports from Europe's largest economy Germany enjoyed an unexpected rebound in July, official data showed Monday, making for a bright spot in the data amid signs of a looming recession, reports AFP. Some 115.2 billion euros ($127 billion) of German goods were sold abroad in July, up 0.7 percent month-on-month and 3.8 percent year-on-year, federal statistics authority Destatis said in seasonally-adjusted figures. Analysts surveyed by Factset had predicted a 0.8 percent month-on-month fall. With imports down 1.5 percent month-on-month, at 93.7 billion euros, Germany's trade surplus reached 21.4 billion euros - up from 18.1 billion in June. A geographical breakdown showed trade both with countries that share the euro single currency and the wider European Union shrank in July, while export growth came from business with non-EU nations climbed by 9.8 percent. After years of booking massive annual trade surpluses, Germany's export-oriented economy has made it a target for criticism from international organisations like the International Monetary Fund and especially US President Donald Trump. But an advantage during global upturns has become an Achilles' heel as growth ebbs, with Trump's trade war with China, weakness in emerging markets and the threat of no-deal Brexit weighing on confidence and activity. After German GDP shrank in the second quarter, many economists now expect a "technical" recession - or two successive quarters of negative growth. "The new funds will be used towards bringing the VoloCity aircraft to commercial launch within the next three years," Volocopter said in a statement. Small firms, including German contenders like Volocopter and Lilium, are in a race with established aircraft manufacturers like Airbus and billion-dollar tech giants like Uber to produce the first air taxis. An array of 18 helicopter-style rotors powered by batteries heave the VoloCity into the sky, with the company saying it can carry two passengers with hand luggage up to 35 kilometres (22 miles), at speeds of up to 110 kilometres per hour. The Financial Times reported that Geely's stake in Volocopter will amount to around 10 percent of the firm. Chairman Li Shufu said the investment underlines Geely's "confidence in Volocopter air taxis as the next ambitious step in our wider expansion in both electrification and new mobility services". Volocopter said its founders remain the largest shareholders, alongside household names like Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler and chipmaker Intel. Geely's arrival as a major Daimler investor - secretively building up a roughly 10-percent stake before unveiling it in February 2018 - unsettled German politicians and businesses. It followed a series of Chinese investments into key industries, sparking fears of vital technologies slipping out of German control and prompting Berlin to tighten laws on foreign investments, especially in "strategic" sectors. But Daimler has sought to downplay the influence of Geely, which alongside its Chinese products has been buying up European carmakers like Sweden's Volvo. "We are delighted to see our partners at Geely investing into Volocopter and becoming shareholders as we are since 2017," Daimler chief executive Olla Kallenius said.

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