Press conference: Third traffic light relief package: successor to the 9-euro ticket should cost around 49 euros

There it is - the "massive package" that SPD parliamentary group leader Rolf Mützenich has promised.

Press conference: Third traffic light relief package: successor to the 9-euro ticket should cost around 49 euros

There it is - the "massive package" that SPD parliamentary group leader Rolf Mützenich has promised. Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) promises the Germans further relief with the third relief package.

"Our country is facing difficult times, it is part of a truth these days that needs to be spoken," Scholz opened the press conference with these words and an appeal for continued support for Ukraine in the war against Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Russia is no longer a reliable energy supplier, that is now a reality. The federal government has prepared for this case by building new terminals. "We will get through this winter," sums up Scholz. So the supply is secured for now.

A more pressing question is that of cost. The government takes citizens' concerns very seriously and is aware of the increasing challenges posed by rising prices. Scholz repeats his promise: "You never walk alone".

The third relief package has a volume of 65 billion euros. This makes it larger than its two predecessors. The electricity market is the first item in the new relief package. The government wants to skim off the excess profits in order to use them to relieve the burden on the citizens. Far-reaching measures are also to be taken to keep electricity prices at a stable level.

With regard to heat prices, i.e. coal and gas, Scholz also promises far-reaching relief, but this requires international agreement. The goal is that energy prices go down.

The energy price flat rate will also be expanded. The relief package includes advantages for pensioners, students and normal consumers. For example, students should receive a one-off payment of 200 euros and pensioners a one-time payment of 300 euros, each on December 1, 2022.

"We are planning the biggest housing benefit reform of all time," says Scholz. Those entitled to housing benefit also receive an additional heating cost subsidy of 415 euros. There should also be an increase in child benefit of 18 euros per month.

With the so-called inflation relief law, the traffic light government also wants to ensure that tax relief enables people with low and middle incomes to better manage the rising costs.

"If employers make an additional payment to their employees because of the current developments, then they shouldn't have to pay taxes on them," promises Scholz - that's one way that everyone can do something about the current situation.

"All of this and many other measures will help us get through this difficult time together," says Scholz. The last item on the Chancellor's agenda: the 9-euro ticket. According to AFP information, the federal government has decided on a budget of 1.5 billion euros for this. However, Scholz himself does not say anything specific about how to proceed.

Green party leader Omid Nouripour says about the relief package: "We will not allow ourselves to be divided in this country." And the traffic light delivers and supports the citizens with their worries and fears. The relief package is substantial and includes targeted relief. In view of the inflation, the state has limited resources, so the focus is on the people who have less money at their disposal.

"It was important for us that climate protection is not forgotten, especially after this summer," says Nouripour. He is satisfied with the 1.5 billion euros for the rail expansion and the climate factor in the housing benefit. He is also looking forward to the continuation of the 9-euro ticket at a price of around 49 euros.

"Despite all the problems, we mustn't forget that Ukraine is dealing with very existential issues," says Finance Minister Christian Lindner, "but we too have been badly hit economically by this war." It is important to get to the root of the citizens' problems. That is why the options for supplying energy are being expanded.

Together with the two relief packages that have already been decided, the relief totals 95 billion euros. The measures "lead to significant additional expenditure in the federal budget," says the paper. This requires "considerable efforts from all three coalition partners and all departments".

In addition to Scholz, Finance Minister Lindner and Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (Greens), several other ministers and the leaders of the three parliamentary groups and parties took part in the negotiations. The coalition partners had raised expectations themselves before the decision was made.

More to come

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