By M. Gonçalves
Since November 22nd, 2005, Angela Merkel has been the German Prime Minister. Differing from regular politicians, Merkel has a PhD in quantum chemistry and worked as a research scientist from 1986 to 1989, while also being fluent in German, English, and Russian. Merkel served as the leader of the Christian democratic union (CDU) from 2000 to 2018 and is the first ever female German Prime Minister.
The Hamburg native is now serving her fourth role as the Prime Minister. She is well known for having successfully helped Germany out of its catastrophic financial crisis during late 2008 and early 2008, which had drastically lowered the country’s GDP. Nowadays, Germany has Europe’s biggest economy and the fourth largest globally, all in big part to the works of Angela Merkel. The main reason why Germany’s economy is a premier one is due to the exporting of high-quality goods, like cars, machinery, pharmaceutics, chemical and electrical products, causing their GDP to have been of 3.67 trillion US Dollars in 2017. At the time, Germany’s GDP per capita was bigger than the UK’s, France’s, and the UAE’s, which has the biggest GDP per capita in the middle east; Germany’s GDP per capita nearly matched Canada’s, being inferior by merely one thousand dollars.
Over her tenure, Merkel has shown adamance to help others, as seen in full display when she allowed over 1 million Syrian refugees into Germany in 2015. Her devotion to helping not only the people of her country, but from all over the world, has definitely pleased the population in the area, as a survey in October 2020 showed 75% of adults in 14 European countries believe Merkel is the best leader in the region. To the dismay of those fond of her regime, Merkel has announced she will not be seeking re-election for prime minister in September of this year, which begs the question, who will be her successor?
With the elections only a few months away, three main candidates have emerged, among those is Annalena Baerbock. Baerbock is a jurist with a public international law degree at the London School of Economics. Additionally, she is the co-chair of the Green Party, a group that focuses on solving many social dilemmas, such as gender inequality, racism, global warming, and more. It is clear that Merkel has pathed the way for women like Baerbock to have a place in politics, with her candidature being a sign of better things to come, especially since every year women take on important roles in a government that was once solely built by men.