This preliminary study stimulates public debate on the circular economy in Germany and serves as a basis for discussion within the recently launched Circular Economy Initiative Deutschland. With a sizeable industry, there is substantial opportunity for Germany to adopt circular policies, but this paradigm shift would mean no less than a reinterpretation of the "Made in Germany" model.
In the past years, both the European Union and several Member States have adopted circular economy strategies to transition to a resource-efficient economy based on keeping resources in use for longer. While countries outside Europe also follow this guiding principle in their industrial and resource policies, e.g. China, Japan or Canada, such a plan is still missing in Germany.
This report discusses the preconditions for a successful implementation of a circular economy within the German context, before discussing the experiences of European countries, which have already initiated the transformation to a circular economy by developing roadmaps or comparable strategies. The learning experiences and best practices of these countries are examined with a view to transferring some of these to Germany.