Taxes: Scholz: Have picked up speed with modernization

Chancellor Olaf Scholz sees the federal government on course for modernizing Germany.

Taxes: Scholz: Have picked up speed with modernization

Chancellor Olaf Scholz sees the federal government on course for modernizing Germany. Speed ​​had picked up, said the SPD politician on Friday at the traditional summer press conference in Berlin. It's about stopping man-made climate change. The pace of change has accelerated significantly.

Scholz referred to the goal of the federal government that 80 percent of the electricity should come from renewable energies in 2030 - according to industry information, the share is currently more than half. To this end, the power grid will be expanded and the charging network for e-cars, according to Scholz. He also mentioned the planned construction of hydrogen-capable gas power plants and the establishment of a hydrogen network. The chancellor went on to say that investments for the future are being made in Germany.

The federal government supports the settlement of semiconductor factories with enormous sums. Intel in Magdeburg is to receive almost ten billion euros from the state for a total investment volume of 30 billion euros.

Criticism of public disputes

Scholz criticizes the public disputes in the traffic light coalition. "It's no secret: neither I nor anyone else like the fact that there was such a loud discussion," he said. For months there had been fierce controversy within the coalition of SPD, Greens and FDP, especially on the so-called heating law.

Scholz went on to say that certain things that had been set in motion with the pace of innovation that the coalition for Germany had set itself were being discussed for the first time. Not only the government, but also society needs an understanding that compromise is good and sensible politics. He promotes it very much. As a result, a very good solution has now been found for the heating law. You have to make it clear that the consensus, the compromise, that "let it go" is a good way to build Germany.

Two percent for defense in the long term

In view of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, Scholz assured that the federal government wants to spend two percent of gross domestic product on defense in the long term. "We have decided that we want to spend these two percent on defense for the Bundeswehr. Next year we will achieve this for the first time from budget funds and the special fund," said the SPD politician. "And I repeat here what I have said on many occasions: It will remain so, even if the special fund is used up," added Scholz.

This week's NATO summit in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius decided: "In accordance with our obligations under Article 3 of the Washington Treaty, we have made a permanent commitment to invest at least 2 percent of our gross domestic product in defense every year." With this compromise formulation, the NATO states settled their dispute over the level of national defense spending for the time being.

Committed to the Convention against Cluster Munitions

Scholz again defended the US decision to supply cluster munitions, but at the same time emphasized the importance of the treaty banning this type of munitions. Germany does not have to comment on the sovereign decisions of other states, he said. The US government "made a decision that is not ours, but that it made sovereignly" - with the indication that otherwise it would not be able to provide sufficient ammunition.

At the same time, Scholz underlined: "But I want to say again: This convention is of great importance to me." It's not at all about the weapon and its effectiveness in war, "because all the weapons that we supply result in terrible destruction when they hit their targets." It is more about "that after the war and outside of the warring parties, others are not threatened by ammunition lying around by accident". Everywhere in Germany where bombs have fallen, there are repeated bomb alerts, even many decades after the end of the Second World War. "And that's why it's a very legitimate concern that we're pursuing with this convention. And I feel obliged to that," said Scholz.

Commitment to the debt brake

Scholz expressly acknowledged the debt brake. Scholz emphasized that the fact that the draft budget again limits new borrowing after the high spending due to the corona pandemic and the Ukraine war is “a step in the right direction”. "We're back on track on the budget and I think that's a good sign." The draft for the 2024 federal budget, which was approved after months of coalition disputes, envisages a reduction in new debt to 16.6 billion euros.

For police use in swimming pool riots

After outbreaks of violence in several Berlin outdoor pools, the Chancellor spoke out in favor of using the police to take action against the rioters. "It is absolutely correct if the conclusion drawn from this is to use the police now," said the SPD politician on Friday in Berlin at his summer press conference. Such incidents should not be acknowledged "with a shrug", stressed Scholz. It must be clear "that we as a state do not tolerate that".

Violent clashes in the Columbiabad in Berlin-Neukölln made national headlines last weekend. The outdoor pool is known nationwide because there are often riots and problems with young people there. Parts of the Neukölln district are considered a social hotspot. When asked whether the incidents could be traced back to integration deficits, the chancellor was evasive: "Anyone who does something like that doesn't behave according to our rules."