Berlin (dpa) – The German economy is looking at the formation of a government with tension, but also somewhat uncertainly: How long do the negotiations last, which alliance is formed, which course is it then following on key issues?
Associations have a long wish list. “The economy now needs a noticeable investment pressure in Germany,” said the President of the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), Peter Adrian, on Wednesday in Berlin. What is one of the core demands:
More speed in digitization
A survey of the chambers of commerce and industry at 3500 companies presented on Wednesday showed that Top priority for a new federal government: promoting digitization. The companies rated the expansion of the digital infrastructure for fiber optic cables as poor. However, digitization is “a decisive growth driver and of great importance for the future viability of Germany as a business location”, according to the DIHK evaluation. This includes: Administrative services must be improved and accelerated.
“Without a powerful digital infrastructure and fast administration, companies will not be able to cope with their major future tasks in this country as well as in global competition,” said Adrian. The digital association Bitkom is calling for a digital ministry that has to take the lead in core projects. The Federation of German Industries (BDI) wrote in a position paper in March that there had to be a “radical change in the German office”. Authorities are in large parts completely inadequately digitally fit.
High energy prices
In view of the high energy costs in international comparison, the load limit has been reached or exceeded for many companies, it says in the DIHK paper on the company survey. The EEG surcharge to promote green electricity must be abolished. This is what the head of the Federal Association of Energy and Water Management, Kerstin Andreae, calls for: “This relieves the burden on consumers and at the same time makes green electricity more competitive in the areas of transport and heating.” However, abolishing the EEG surcharge will cost many billions.
In the economy it is said that many companies support the goal of greenhouse gas neutrality in Germany until 2045 and are already on the way. Only: the framework conditions would have to be right. For example, the automotive industry has long been calling for more speed to be needed when setting up the charging network for electric cars. DIHK President Adrian said against the background of rising CO2 prices that the competitiveness of German companies should not fall by the wayside. There must be a joint international approach and intensive coordination processes between the EU, the USA and China.
In July, after politicians tightened climate targets, the BDI industry association said that this would increase the billions in investments required once enormous. Companies would have to play a key role in this. “To do this, they need a predictable planning horizon, financial support and protection from unfair competition.” due to long planning and approval procedures not making progress. In May, for example, the head of the chemical company BASF, Martin Brudermüller, said: “Without sufficient quantities of electricity from renewable sources at competitive prices, the transformation that lies ahead of us cannot succeed.”
Taxes and bureaucracy
For a long time, the economy has complained of a high tax burden for German companies in international comparison – and too much bureaucracy. In the DIHK paper it is said that an increasing tax burden and a lot of bureaucracy in the administration of state taxes put a strain on competitiveness. Adrian also spoke out in favor of better depreciation conditions in order to make investments easier.
In a plan, the Federation of German Employers’ Associations called for an “unleashing program” for the economy with extensive debureaucratisation: “The focus should be on planning law , which accelerates investments and does not prevent them, as well as a faster digitization of the administration. ” Tax policy, for example, calls for the solidarity surcharge to be abolished completely.