After three years of economic downturn teetering on recession, Germany looks ahead to a continuation of the upswing which began to make itself felt at the end of last year. The recovery should pick up speed throughout 2004, according to the Economics Ministry on Wednesday, which published its annual report on the state of the economy. "We have come through the valley of tears, and Germany is moving upwards again," Economy Minister Wolfgang Clement said. Initially growth will be spurred on by improvements in the global economy, but then the domestic market will kick in and add to the recovery. "On average, the Gross Domestic Product for 2004 is expected to increase by 1.5 to 2.0 percent," the report said. Germany will primarily profit from healthier markets in the United States and Asia, its two largest trading areas, but an improvement in Eastern European economies will also be of benefit.