National Archives This is historical material “frozen in time”. The website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work.

A CLOSE AND HISTORIC RELATIONSHIP: The relationship between the German people and the United States predates America’s independence and extends to the deep bond the two countries share today.

  • The United States and Germany form the bedrock of the transatlantic relationship and the NATO Alliance, based on shared values of freedom, democracy, and human rights.
  • On October 6, 1683, 13 German families landed in Philadelphia and went on to found the first German settlement in America: Germantown, Pennsylvania.
  • Today, there are more than 44 million Americans of German heritage, comprising the United States’ largest ancestry group.
    • President Trump is the proud grandson of German immigrants to the United States.
    • Other notable Americans of German heritage include President Eisenhower, Neil Armstrong, Levi Strauss, Amelia Earhart, and Babe Ruth.
  • President Trump and Chancellor Merkel last met in July in Hamburg, Germany, when the Chancellor hosted the President at the G20 Summit.
    • This visit by the Chancellor will be her second to the White House during Donald Trump’s tenure as President of the United States.

COOPERATION ON JOBS AND TRADE: The United States and Germany have a deep trade and investment relationship, and the President and Chancellor Merkel have worked to enhance economic cooperation through collaboration on apprenticeships and women’s financial empowerment.

  • Germany has long been a leader with respect to its highly successful apprenticeship programs.
  • During Chancellor Merkel’s March 2017 visit to the White House, President Trump convened a group of U.S. and German business leaders to join the Chancellor and the President for a discussion on vocational training.
    • At the meeting, major companies announced that they would train thousands through apprenticeship programs and invest hundreds of millions of dollars in training.
  • In Hamburg, the President joined Ivanka Trump and Chancellor Merkel to announce a $50 million contribution from the United States to an initiative to empower women financially around the world.
  • In 2017, Germany and the United States conducted over $237 billion in total trade in goods and services.
    • In 2017, the U.S. exported $53.5 billion in goods to Germany.
  • In the first two months of 2018, the United States exported $9 billion in goods to Germany, an increase of almost $1 billion over the same period in 2017.
  • In 2016, German direct investment in the United States was valued at over $372 billion, with $14 billion in new investment.
  • In 2015, U.S. affiliates of German firms employed over 670,000 American workers and invested $7.2 billion in innovative research and development.

A PARTNER ON INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AND COUNTERTERRORISM: Germany has been a valuable partner to the United States in the fight to eliminate ISIS and counter foreign threats.

  • Since 2014, Germany has pledged over $1.5 billion (€1.3 billion) for humanitarian assistance, stabilization support and development cooperation in Iraq.
    • German forces are some of the most active participants in the Defeat ISIS coalition, providing support troops as well as manned reconnaissance and aerial refueling aircraft.
  • Since 2012, Germany has pledged more than $6 billion (€5.5 billion) in assistance related to the Syria crisis, including money for de-mining, and has helped lead the drive for European sanctions against the Assad regime.
  • Germany is the second largest troop contributor to NATO missions and is a framework nation in Afghanistan.
    • In March 2018, Germany approved a 320 troop increase for the NATO Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan.
  • Since 2017, Germany has also provided $2.4 billion in development and security assistance to Afghanistan.
  • Germany also serves as a framework nation for NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence on NATO’s Eastern Flank and contributes 530 personnel to Kosovo Force (KFOR).
  • Germany, alongside France, headlines Western efforts to restore peace in Ukraine and ensure its sovereignty and territorial integrity under the framework of the Minsk Agreements.