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Germany more attractive for investors

In a fresh study comparing nations' attractiveness as an investment location, Germany has moved up to fourth position, second to none in the EU. But it has not been able to overtake strong rivals overseas such as the US.

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Chinese investors drawn to Germany

Germany has become more attractive to foreign investors, an annual study by consulting firm Ernst & Young (EY) showed Tuesday. Europe's economic powerhouse moved up from 6th to 4th place in the annual ranking.

The executives polled praised Germany for its stable political and legal environment, but also cited the country's advanced infrastructure and employees' high job qualification levels as decisive factors to make investments.

EY said the

overall number of foreign investment projects

in Germany rose by 12 percent in 2013 as compared with the previous year. Only the UK logged more projects in Europe, the study said.

More projects, fewer new jobs

Equally important, many potential investors believed German had very

favorable economic prospects

. 49 percent of respondents expected an even better investment climate in the country in the years ahead.

"Germany is no doubt the most robust and competitive large economy in Europe and enjoys an excellent reputation among investors abroad," EY partner Peter Englisch said in a statement.

But there was also a downside to the figures presented Tuesday. Despite the number of foreign investment projects being on the rise, the number of jobs created this way in Germany dropped by 17 percent year-on-year to 10,350.

While Germany's attractiveness among foreign investors increased, the improvement was not enough to shoot it to the top three in the ranking. Leading the table by a wide margin is China, followed by the US.

Astonishingly, Russia took third place in the EY ranking, but Ernst & Young pointed out the poll was completed shortly before the onset of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia.

hg/nz (Reuters, EY)

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