Germany is opposed to military actions in the context of Iran's nuclear ambitions, even though purely diplomatic approaches might eventually lead to the annihilation of Israel. And Germany's powerful trade associations even reject economic sanctions against Iraq. The reason for Germany's peacenick policy?
Definitely not humanitarian considerations.
It's the economy, stupid.
More comprehensive sanctions [i.e. including commercial sanctions] would be tied to ever higher costs also for the West – and, in particular, for Germany. Should commercial sanctions be applied, it would be first and foremost the EU states that are affected. In 2004, Germany was the most important supplier of Iran (12.3% of all imports), followed by France (8.5%), Italy (7.9%), and China (7.5%). (...)
Current German policy in fact actively encourages exports to Iran: notably by having the German state assume the financial risks of German firms exporting to Iran (via the so-called "Hermes" program of export credit guarantees).
Read John Rosenthal's Trans-Int blog for more...