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a month ago

German ministries' deadline for spending wishes extended

Friedrich Merz, opposition leader and chairman of the Christian Democratic Union party CDU, looks on ahead of the final four-day-long debate of the German lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, about the 2024 budget, in Berlin, Germany, January 30, 2024.
Friedrich Merz, opposition leader and chairman of the Christian Democratic Union party CDU, looks on ahead of the final four-day-long debate of the German lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, about the 2024 budget, in Berlin, Germany, January 30, 2024. Photo : REUTERS/Liesa Johannssen/Files

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The German ministries will have close to two additional weeks to submit their spending wishes for the 2025 budget, according to government and coalition sources, the first delay in the challenging preparations of next year’s budget.

“It was particularly the wish of the Green-led ministries to postpone the date for the feedback to the Ministry of Finance, as they cannot meet for an internal meeting until the end of April for organizational reasons,” a source said.

The new deadline is now May 2, while the ministries were expected to outline their spending wishes and also make savings proposals by April 19.

Under the plan, there will be further political discussions in the coalition government of the Social Democrats (SPD), Greens and pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) until the cabinet approves the first draft on July 3, before the summer break.

The Bundestag lower house of parliament will then discuss the draft from September and pass it by the end of November 2024.

According to sources, the gap for the 2025 budget is estimated in a range of 15 billion to 25 billion euros.

Extremely tough negotiations are expected within the coalition because more money needs to be invested in defence and will then be lacking elsewhere.

Furthermore, last November a court ruling blew a 60 billion euros hole in public finances and threw the government’s financing framework into turmoil.

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