Bavaria and Saxony registered the strongest economic growth last year among Germany's 16 federal states, the federal statistics office said Tuesday. The gross domestic product (GDP) in both states rose by 2.3 percent. The Germany-wide average stood at 1.7 percent. According to the statistics, all German states did recover and surge ahead after the downturn of 2003, but the slimmest growth margins were seen in the German capital of Berlin whose economy only managed to grow by a paltry 0.4 percent. Among Germany's former communist eastern states, only Saxony managed to post solid economic gains. However, the former communist eastern states are still far removed from western Germany's economic standard, statistics showed. Thus, despite its good performance in 2004, Saxony's GDP only amounted to €38,589 ($49, 217) per employed person as against around €55,000 in the western states.