In view of the increased number of refugees, the federal states are pushing for easier deportation of people without a right to stay in Germany. A decision by the Prime Ministers' Conference (MPK) on Thursday in Berlin states that the federal government should intensify its efforts to conclude agreements with the countries of origin about taking back their citizens.
An overview of this and other MPK topics:
Lower Saxony's Prime Minister Stephan Weil explained that the countries of origin have often refused to take people back without a right to stay. Therefore, a federal-state meeting on May 10 with Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) should also address the question of how it can be possible "to ensure that fewer people come to us who, at the end of the day, have no right to do so". .
Weil emphasized the fundamental right to asylum in Germany. "But we must also be able to actually cope with this challenge," said the SPD politician. Saxony's Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) said: "The number of people coming to Germany must be drastically reduced. And only the federal government can clarify that." The EU's external border between Bulgaria and Turkey must be secured - "also with fences".
The MPK decision states that the control and protection of the EU's external borders must become more effective. The goal must also be a solidarity distribution system in Europe. Thuringia declared in a memorandum that European refugee and migration policy should be further developed in such a way that legal and orderly migration would be possible without endangering life.
The federal states are also demanding significantly more money from the federal government than before in order to cope with the high number of refugees. According to the MPK decision, states and municipalities need more planning security. A fixed flat rate from the federal government would not do justice to the changes in refugee access. Therefore, during the talks with Chancellor Scholz on May 10th, it must also be discussed what permanent participation by the federal government could look like.
Lower Saxony's head of government, Weil, criticized the fact that federal grants had fallen, while the payments from the states to the municipalities had recently risen sharply. "More has to come from the federal government," Weil said. This applies to the accommodation of asylum seekers as well as to people from Ukraine.
Both Weil and his North Rhine-Westphalian counterpart Hendrik Wüst (CDU) demanded that the federal government bear half of the costs incurred by taking in asylum seekers and Ukrainians.
"Germany has to be quicker on all planning issues," said Wüst. The fact that the pact agreed with the federal government to speed up planning has not progressed since May is "grotesque". Only with faster approvals for energy projects can Germany achieve its climate goals.
"In Germany, we are too complicated, especially in the infrastructure sector, and therefore too slow. We have to become simpler and we have to become faster," Weil also criticized. In the MPK decision, the states are calling on the federal government to advance the planned pact for faster procedures as quickly as possible.
According to the countries, the persistently high electricity and gas prices threaten the international competitiveness of energy-intensive companies. "In the medium and long term, the specter of deindustrialization is really real," said Wüst. According to the MPK decision, the federal government should therefore quickly enable a competitive industrial electricity price. The federal states are also pushing for better security in energy trading, especially for municipal utilities and smaller suppliers.
Stricter and uniform regulations in terms of transparency, committee control and correct behavior are to apply to public broadcasting in the future. The country heads are reacting to the crises at the ARD stations Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB) and Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR). As an example of more transparency, the Prime Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate, Malu Dreyer (SPD), as Chair of the Broadcasting Commission, cited the disclosure of production costs or executive salaries.
The state leaders also agreed on a successor to Bavaria's Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) on the ZDF board of directors. Baden-Württemberg's Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann (Greens) will take over Söder's place in the control body.