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marks the complete process of the change from socialism and planned economy to market economy and capitalism in East Germanymarker around the years 1989 and 1990. It encompasses several processes and events which later have become synonymous with the overall process. These processes and events are:

In hindsight, the German word (meaning "change", "turning point") then took on a new meaning; ; "since reunification" or "since the Wall fell"; or "since the change". This period is marked by West German aid to East Germany, a total reaching an estimated $775 billion over 10 years. This burden greatly diminished much of the initial enthusiasm the Westerners felt for the prospect of reunification.

This "turning point" has marked the reunification of Germanymarker. The term was first used publicly in East Germany on 18 October 1989 in a speech by interim GDR leader Egon Krenz (the term having been used on the cover of influential West German news magazine Der Spiegel two days previously). Whilst it initially referred to the end of the old East German government, has become synonymous with the fall of the Wall and of the East German state, and indeed of the entire Iron Curtain and Eastern Bloc state socialism.


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