German finance minister: 2024 budget just a first step in fiscal normalization

Date:

Plenum session of the lower house of parliament, Bundestag, in Berlin

German Finance Minister Christian Lindner speaks during a plenum session of the lower house of parliament, Bundestag, to present the 2024 budget and financial planning of the Federal Government, in Berlin, Germany September 5, 2023. REUTERS/Annegret Hilse Acquire Licensing Rights

BERLIN, Sept 5 (Reuters) – Germany’s budget for 2024 is just a first step towards the needed normalization of fiscal policy, said German Finance Minister Christian Lindner on Tuesday.

“We need to recognise our new fiscal realities,” he said while presenting the draft for the 2024 budget and financial plans through 2027 to parliament. “We need to refocus,” he said.

Europe’s biggest economic power is aiming to curb spending that surged in response to COVID-19 and the Ukraine war.

“We can’t solve all problems with public money,” he said.

Lindner plans to return to Germany’s debt brake that constitutionally limits the budget deficit to 0.35% of economic output. The brake was suspended between 2020 and 2022 to help cushion the economic impact of the pandemic and the jump in energy prices that followed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Bundestag lower house of parliament is meeting to discuss the budget and financial planning this week.

The deadline for deciding on the entire federal budget will be the end of the budget week on Dec. 1.

Between now and then, the draft budget is likely to change significantly, in part to take into account the new tax estimate due in autumn and an adjustment of economic expectations.

Reporting by Maria Martinez
Editing by Miranda Murray

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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