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Changes in the German exporting industry

A look at international world trade clearly shows: There is an ongoing shift of value added and employment away from industry to the services sector. According to the OECD services already account for almost half of German exports.

A study on the effects of the digital transformation in the economy on the Export Credit Guarantees of the Federal Republic of Germany shows that still more goods than services are exported. However, the study carried out by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) emphasises: trade in services is growing – also in Germany.

The export of industrial goods is strongly influenced by the availability of high-quality services. Industrial products exported from Germany include approximately two thirds of service input in the form of advance performance (OECD 2020). In this way, know-how, services and rights increasingly become the intangible core of tangible goods. 

Practical insights: Exports of services to Africa

German companies render most services in other European countries. But other regions, too, offer scope for growth in particular Asia and Africa. A company that taps into this development potential is, for example, ILF Business Group. The ILF Group is an internationally operating engineering and consulting company focussing on industrial and infrastructure projects in the fields of energy & climate protection, water & environment, transport and urban areas as well as oil, gas & industry.

In an interview, Dr. Schäfer explained the risks that are involved in their service projects and how the Export Credit Guarantee for Service Providers of the Federal Government (so-called Hermes Cover) helped to mitigate these risks.

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New export models come along with new risks

The offer of service-based business models involves new risks for exporters. The export credit guarantees (so-called Hermes Cover) will help you to protect your service exports against these risks.

The ultimate aim is:




In order to cover typical service risks, the Federal Government offers various instruments. Possible losses due to political and commercial causes for bad debt losses can be covered, including, for example, losses due to unfair calling of contract guarantees.

The Export Credit Guarantees of the Federal Government aim at promoting the business location Germany and its export strength with innovative, competitive services. The export of services is characterised by a high degree of individualisation. Thus, flexibility in cover is particularly important in connection with successful exports of services.

You would like to participate in this growth? And, at the same time, wish to minimise your risks?

Three ways to cover for your export of services

Future-oriented industries need solutions 

We would like to know whether our products meet your needs, what you really need in form of state support or where the problems lie.

Get in touch with us and write us: email.


Directly enquire about a transaction

With the preliminary inquiry (in German only), we advise you about the possibilities to cover your transaction under an export credit guarantee. Totally non-committal and free of charge.

Submitting a preliminary inquiry

Online event

You will find our recording of the online event (DE) on this subject in our media centre:

More detailed information / contact

Product information, expert knowledge and practical examples: You would like to receive more insights into the practical aspects and background information from our business advisors?

Matthias Jost

Counter-Guarantee, Export Credit Cover for Service Providers, Revolving Buyer Credit Cover

René Auf der Landwehr

Consultant, Region Nuremberg, Buyer Credit Cover for Service Providers

 Country cover policy of more than 200 countries.