Employer president angry
Dulger: Parts of the traffic lights don’t listen
October 17, 2023, 3:14 a.m
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The traffic light coalition has been in low polls for months and there are also complaints from business. For example from employer president Dulger. In an interview he literally lambasted the government.
Shortly before the employers’ day, association president Rainer Dulger criticized the traffic light coalition. The labor market, economic system and energy policy are over-regulated in Germany, the employer president told the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”. It is difficult to develop as an entrepreneur or employee. “But parts of the traffic lights are not listening to us. We are experiencing an economic policy standstill at the turn of the century – the train has already stopped at the beginning of the route.”
Dulger’s employers’ association BDA is organizing the employers’ day on Tuesday, at which Chancellor Olaf Scholz, CDU leader Friedrich Merz, Economics Minister Robert Habeck and Finance Minister Christian Lindner are expected. The main topic is likely to be the economic downturn in Germany. The federal government expects economic output to decline by 0.4 percent this year. Business associations have been calling for relief for companies for a long time.
Dulger complained that the energy costs were too high because of taxes and fees. Germany also has some of the highest taxes and additional wage costs. The infrastructure is dilapidated, especially in terms of traffic. The digitalization of administration is not yet taking place properly. “Look at how far Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary and the Baltics have digitized their administrative processes. This all plays into the conditions offered by a location,” said Dulger.
The association president also criticized the bureaucracy that comes from Brussels and mentioned the supply chain law or the directive for social reports that large companies have to prepare annually. The guidelines for the social report alone are almost as thick as the Frankfurt telephone book. “It’s bureaucratic madness that is being dumped on us, especially from Brussels.” Germany often implements such rules much more strictly than the rest of the EU.
Dulger also criticized the traffic light coalition’s climate policy. When asked whether the state should change direction towards climate neutrality, he said: “I think it would be fundamentally wrong to accept a dying economy as collateral damage in order to achieve climate protection goals.” Many people also see it that way, which was shown not least by the results of the traffic light parties in the recent state elections. “If the economy is doing worse, then that weakens the welfare state,” said the association president.