Baden-Württemberg deemed to have best economic potential

The southwestern German state of Baden-Württemberg has been declared the region with the greatest economic potential in a new study published by business daily Handelsblatt.

Baden-Württemberg deemed to have best economic potential
Photo: DPA

Swiss economic think-tank Prognos looked at all 413 cities and regions in Germany and determined that Hamburg, Berlin and Munich are the places most hospitable to business. However, when it came to grading the various regions of Germany, 11 of the top 25 were in Baden-Württemberg.

According to the report, the mechanical engineering and health-related businesses have flourished in the area. Many small- to medium-sized businesses have been able to tap the global markets while being based in the state.

Adding to the prospects for success, Prognos pointed to the number of post-secondary institutions to train future generations in places such as Heilbronn and Esslingen.

But while the future looks rosy for Germany’s southwest, Prognos noted that its formerly communist eastern region are still lagging behind the western states even 20 years after reunification.

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Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.