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The superiority of Germany's so-called "social market economy" is an article of faith for virtually all of Germany's major political parties (with the possible exception of the "post-communist" Left Party, which would prefer an outright socialist one). The expression is commonly associated with Ludwig Erhard, post-War West Germany's first economics minister under the Christian Democratic Chancellor Konrad Adenauer. In current usage, the expression strongly connotes a rejection of a "pure" market economy or "unbridled" capitalism, such as the advocates of the "social market" model presumed to exist in the United States and other "Anglo-Saxon" countries.

In a series of seminars held recently in Berlin, Ankara, and Abu Dhabi, Germany's Konrad Adenauer Foundation examined the "commonalities" between the social market economy and "Islamic economics." As reported in the German daily Die Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the participants:

came to the conclusion that [the commonalities] were great and that, for example, the recent financial crisis would not have broken out if today's economic order had been oriented to the common values shared by both. The politicians present, including those from the [German] Bundestag, did not disagree.


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