German Finance Minister: To Support Economy Until Crisis Ends

8 February 2021

By David Barwick – Frankfurt (Econostream) – The German government will continue extending financial support consistent with the state of the pandemic until the crisis has ended, Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said on Monday.

In an interview with German daily Die Frankenpost, Scholz, according to a text made available by the Finance Ministry, affirmed that Germany has enough money to respond to the crisis.

A stronger-than-expected economy made it unnecessary to spend the entire approved amount last year, he noted. ‘This year as well we have mobilised considerable resources. We are doing what is possible and necessary so that jobs are preserved and companies make it through this difficult crisis.’

The government will continue to adapt financial support measures to the evolution of the pandemic ‘until the crisis is over’, he said.

Germany will ‘grow out of debt’, he said. ‘One can predict that in the medium term we will again have sound finances.’ German sovereign debt totalled 80% of GDP after the global financial crisis and presumably ‘only somewhat more than 70% this time’, he said. ‘Many countries envy us for this.‘

The ‘bigger challenge’, he continued, is that tax revenues will fall short of forecasts made prior to the pandemic.

As to prospects for vaccinating several million citizens a week in the second quarter, Scholz urged caution in making precise promises. As it remains the case that ‘vaccination is the way out of this pandemic’, the government wants to vaccinate as many people as quickly as possible, he said.