Friday 23 April 2021
“Taking off after a pandemic”
Bundestag adopts supplementary budget
The federal government can take on up to 240 billion euros in new debt this year. This historical sum is intended to mitigate the consequences of the pandemic and boost the economy. The opposition complains about the unclear repayment and the lack of savings.
The Bundestag has cleared the way for a record federal debt this year. He passed the supplementary budget with a new loan of 60.4 billion euros. This means that Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz can take out the unprecedented loan amount of 240.2 billion euros this year. The supplementary budget primarily provides for pandemic-related expenses for business and family aid as well as for health measures such as the purchase of vaccines. At the same time, it is intended to compensate for lower tax revenues.
In order to make the high level of new debt possible, the Bundestag again lifted the debt brake anchored in Article 115 of the Basic Law. Scholz said in the debate that the supplementary budget contained “massive financial support for the whole of society”. It is about overcoming the corona pandemic. “After the pandemic, we want to take off,” said Scholz.
The opposition criticized the amount of new debt, the renouncement of savings elsewhere and the lack of clarity about the later repayment of the debt. The FDP complained that the federal government did not first access its reserves before taking on new debts. The CDU / CSU and SPD voted for the budget. FDP, Left and AfD voted against, the Greens abstained.