German Finance Minister Christian Lindner Stresses Germany Needs Structural Reforms to Restart Growth: Says ‘Not a Sick Man, Just a Tired Man Who Needs Coffee’

German Finance Minister Stresses Need for Structural Reforms

German Finance Minister Christian Lindner stressed that Germany, which suffered a recession in 2023, is “not a sick man” but “a tired man who needs coffee” in the form of structural reforms to restart growth.

Not a Sick Man

Lindner said on Friday, during the World Economic Forum in the Swiss Alps in Davos: “I know that some people think that Germany is a sick man. Germany is not a sick man.” He added: “Germany, after a very successful period since 2012, and recent years that witnessed crises, has become like a tired man after a night during which he did not sleep well.”

Wake-Up Call for Structural Reforms

He stressed that “weak growth expectations are a wake-up call,” noting that Germany “will drink good coffee,” meaning “it will undertake structural reforms, and then continue to succeed economically.” “Growth expectations are not what we expect them to be, but our economy is solid,” Lindner said. He added, “From now on, we must carry out our duties.” He continued, “We had to solve the issue of debt and deficit…and we succeeded.”

Germany’s Economic Challenges

Many observers recently described the largest economy in the Eurozone (Germany) as the “sick man of Europe,” an expression used in the late 1990s, after German reunification. The German government is trying to reduce government spending by gradually canceling tax exemptions for agricultural diesel, which led to the outbreak of protests by German farmers and forced the German government to partially retract its decision, but the German Farmers Union considered this step “insufficient.” According to the German Federal Statistical Office, Destatis, the reason for the economic contraction in Germany is due to high inflation and interest rates, indicating a decline in gross domestic product by 0.3% last year, recording the worst indicator among major global economies, and the highest percentage of decline in domestic product since the Corona epidemic in 2017. 2020. The German Statistical Office indicates that the decline in output was affected by weak domestic and external demand, as imports decreased by 3%, and exports by 1.8%. The German Central Bank reduced its GDP growth expectations for this year and next from 1.2% and 1.3% to 0.4% and 1.2%, respectively.

Source

Source: AFP + RT

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