Energy crisis: "Massive package": coalition decides on relief

In the crisis surrounding Russian gas and rising prices, the coalition wants to relieve the burden on citizens in a targeted manner.

Energy crisis: "Massive package": coalition decides on relief

In the crisis surrounding Russian gas and rising prices, the coalition wants to relieve the burden on citizens in a targeted manner. The heads of the traffic light alliance were still discussing a bundle of different measures in the Berlin Chancellery on Saturday evening. An end to the negotiations in the coalition committee of the SPD, Greens and FDP was initially not foreseeable.

According to information from negotiating circles, the talks in a large group began shortly after noon. A "massive package" is planned, as FDP leader Christian Lindner and SPD faction leader Rolf Mützenich had announced in advance.

In addition to Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (Greens), Finance Minister Lindner, several other ministers and the leaders of the three parliamentary groups and parties took part. In the early evening, a few traffic light politicians caught some fresh air in small groups of talks on the balcony of the Chancellery.

Chancellor wants a "tailor-made" package

At a cabinet meeting in the middle of the week, Scholz had announced a relief package that was “as tailor-made as possible, as efficient as possible, as targeted as possible”. The parliamentary manager of the SPD parliamentary group, Katja Mast, said on Deutschlandfunk on Saturday: "We know that we cannot leave people alone with inflation and rising energy prices."

For a possible relief package under discussion are, among other things, targeted help for pensioners and students, tax cuts and a successor regulation for the 9-euro local transport ticket. So far, the SPD, Greens and FDP had staked out their partly different positions. Scholz said at the exam in Meseberg near Berlin: "We are working on a large building, and the architecture of this building depends on all the individual parts, which only result in a good construction together."

Pensioners are not included in the energy flat rate

From the point of view of the SPD chairman Lars Klingbeil, more precise help than before is necessary. "We have to help those who are really in existential need," he told the "Süddeutsche Zeitung" (Saturday). This also means that high earners suffer losses, "but they can cope with that". The fact that the pensioners were not included in the energy flat rate of 300 euros was "a mistake". "It has to be corrected now."

So far, the electricity price surcharge to promote renewable energies (EEG surcharge) has already been abolished, there is an energy flat rate of 300 euros for all employees and a one-off payment of 100 to 200 euros for all unemployed, child benefit has been increased once by 100 euros per child, three The fuel price was supported for months up to August, and there was a 9-euro ticket for local public transport for the months of June, July and August.

According to their own statements, trade unions, the left and the AfD may want to call on dissatisfied people to protest in the fall. IG Metall Chairman Jörg Hofmann told the German Press Agency: "It's about nothing less than the question of whether it will be possible to relieve the burden on citizens effectively and understandably, or whether the growing uncertainty will lead to a break in social cohesion leads."

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