Stuttgart/Berlin (dpa/lsw) - The former Baden-Württemberg Environment Minister Tanja Gönner (CDU) is expected to become the new general manager of the influential industry association BDI. This was announced by the Federation of German Industries on Thursday in Berlin. The appointment should take place at the suggestion of BDI President Siegfried Russwurm in the meeting of the Executive Committee and Executive Board on June 20, 2022. The 52-year-old is scheduled to take office in the second half of 2022. Her predecessor Joachim Lang had already asked for his appointment to be canceled in February. The portal "The Pioneer" reported first.
As a former minister in the state government of Baden-Württemberg and from her many years of leadership of the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), Gönner brings extensive skills and a wide range of experience to the table, Russwurm said according to the announcement. "As a result, she has excellent qualifications to represent German industry nationally and internationally in her future function, to help shape her course in climate policy and to strengthen her international competitiveness, and to actively engage in social dialogue."
Gönner emphasized that the transformation to climate neutrality, the challenges in the international context and acceptance in society are major tasks that she faces "with respect and with great anticipation".
Gönner is a CDU member and, according to the BDI, has been spokeswoman for the GIZ board since 2012. From 2004 to 2011 she was Minister for Social Affairs, Environment and Transport in the state government of Baden-Württemberg and from 2002 to 2004 she was a member of the German Bundestag. In addition, the qualified lawyer is involved in various honorary functions and holds various advisory and supervisory board mandates.
Gönner is not the first well-known politician from the southwest to switch to an association. The former Greens member of the Bundestag, Kerstin Andreae, has been Chair of the Executive Board of the Federal Association of Energy and Water Industries since November 2019.