Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner presented the Federal Government’s draft budget in the parliament, explaining the budgetary change of course. "We need to refocus,” Lindner stressed. “This means that we will return to the debt limit, or more precisely: to sustainable public finances.”
The 2024 federal budget provides for revenues and expenditures of 445.7 billion euros, just under 31 billion euros less than the current year’s budget. Finance Minister Lindner is convinced that “the 2024 budget is a budget of money and reason, a courageous rather than a reckless budget, a budget of less debt and more opportunities. In a nutshell: a smart budget for transformation.”
He added that fighting inflation and leaving this time of high crisis-related spending behind were the top priorities. “Failure to overcome crisis policy would permanently threaten the stability of our society,” Lindner cautioned. He continued with a clear message concerning the rising interest expenditure: “We quite simply cannot afford to take on an unlimited amount of new debt. We would not be able to finance that.”
With his budgetary strategy Federal Finance Minister Lindner seeks to rapidly bring public debt back down to the pre-crisis level. He described this goal as “a moral duty towards those who come after us”. Planning provides for a drastic and continuous decrease of new debt in order to achieve this goal: from 45.6 billion euros this year, down to around 16.6 billion euros in 2024. In 2027, the Federal Government plans to borrow no more than 15 billion euros.