Chancellor Angela Merkel thanked the experts for their recommendations, which she described as "very inspiring". Entitled "Mastering structural change", the report is a good reflection of precisely what motivates the German government, stated the Chancellor. Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz was also at the Chancellery for the presentation of the annual report.
Climate action – a building block
Climate action has become a "major building block" in the work of the government, said the Chancellor. Examples can be seen in the transition in the fields of mobility and energy supply. Then there is the "transformation" of the working world, she stressed, pointing to the package of measures on digitalisation and tax incentives for research, which the Council of Experts has repeatedly encouraged the government to undertake.
Comparable living conditions
Germany must master structural change such that living conditions across the country are comparable, stressed Angela Merkel. The German government has provided assistance for families and forged ahead with measures to encourage the construction of new housing, and is investing in the future, particularly in climate action.
The Chancellor welcomed what the experts had to say about the brake on new borrowing, which certainly offers leeway. "But you also say quite clearly that a balanced budget and investment are important," underscored the Chancellor. Angela Merkel praised the fact that the Council of Experts has addressed demographic issues, and said that the government’s Skilled Workers Immigration Act (Fachkräfteeinwanderungsgesetz) is an important building block in this regard.
The German Council of Economic Experts is an independent body that has advised the government on economic matters since 1963. Its five members are appointed for a period of five years by the Federal President on the basis of proposals made by the government. The Council also publishes special reports on specific topics. For 2020 the Council expects Germany’s gross domestic product (GDP) to increase by 0.9 per cent.