Extent of German economic growth-Industry, Urbanisation and Agriculture

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Steel Industry

  • German advantage over Britain-due to size of Germanys companies. Britain only had one firm with the annual capacity to produce over 300,000 tonnes of steel. Germany had 10.
  • Steel production fuelled the growth of other companies included armaments and railwys. The prussian railways expanded from 5000 in 1876 to 37,000 in 1914
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  • chemicals was stimulated by the demand for explosives from the military and tyes from textiles.
  • In 1924 Great Britain imported around 80% of its chemical dyes, the majority from Germany.
  • Germany led the way in Pharmaceuticals
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  • Extent of benefits to different scoial classes varied
  • Demographic revolution-expansions of towns ands cities
  • Rapid population growth
  • Attracted by regular work and pay


  • Better hygiene and medicine-decline in infant mortaily-INDICATOR
  • Building of tramways
  • 1896-1912 the proortion of taxpayers assessed on incomes under 900 marks fell from 75% to 52%. Real wages increased.


  • Overcrowding and poor quality of acconomdation due to rate of expansion
  • Unemployment and homelessness (mainly unskilled)
  • Growth of middle lcass white collar workers
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  • Fortunes of agriculture fluctuated due to urbanisation and industrialisation which benefitted big business.

Strengths within agricultural system

  • Bismarks1897 Tariff Law protected German farms-both junkers and peasantry
  • High prices they recieved
  • Rapid population created extra demand+ growth in prices.
  • Chemical industry-fertilisers increased yields
  • Mechanisation of agriculture, more effcient and less labour intensive increasing output.

Weaknesses within agricultural system

  • Urbanisation and loss of workforce to cities
  • Recruitment of foreign workers
  • Threats of modernatisation i.e imports and refridgerated shipping-cheaper meat.
  • Hard to mantain traditional large estate-debt increase- between 1896-1912 astates sold more frequently then before.
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