Germany: Country and Foreign Investment
The German government is a Federal democracy. The Bundestag (lower house) consists of 622 seats made up of elected members of all parties from the 16 Federal states. At the same time electors vote for a government party with their second vote.
Elections take place every four years. The latest election was in September 2009 where Angela Merkel was re-elected as chancellor for a second term.
The president is elected every five years and fulfils the role of head of state for ceremonial and other duties.
The Bundesrat is the federal council and sometimes referred to as the upper house. It consists of delegates from the 16 Federal states. The delegates are appointed by their respective governments and can therefore be removed at any time. Each Federal state is assigned a number of votes in the Bundesrat based on the number of inhabitants in the state. The Bundesrat votes on legislation relating to individual Federal states and also has the power to veto legislation put before it by the Federal government before it is passed to the Bundestag for debate.