"It rumbles occasionally": Lindner draws a positive interim conclusion of the traffic light

From the point of view of Finance Minister Lindner, Germany "came through this year of complex crises comparatively well".

"It rumbles occasionally": Lindner draws a positive interim conclusion of the traffic light

From the point of view of Finance Minister Lindner, Germany "came through this year of complex crises comparatively well". In this respect, the federal government has fulfilled its responsibility.

At the end of the year, FDP leader Christian Lindner drew a positive balance of the traffic light coalition's work to date. "We are acting under great pressure due to the external circumstances of a war, inflation and the consequences of the corona pandemic that have not yet been fully overcome," Lindner told the news site ntv.de. "Three parties are doing this with very different ideas and values. The process occasionally rumbles." At the same time, Lindner emphasized that Germany had "came through this year of complex crises comparatively well". In this respect, the federal government has fulfilled its responsibility.

Lindner rejected the assumption that he and Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck (Greens) were opponents within the federal government. As Finance Minister, he is "representative of the interests of the taxpayers," said the FDP leader. "I have to keep an eye on the overall macroeconomic development, I have to make decisions about scarce resources, which are always too few because there are always more sensible and desirable things than means. This inevitably results in different positions."

However, Lindner made it clear that there are definitely conflicts in the coalition. With a view to the federal government's goal of spending an average of more than two percent of gross domestic product on defense spending in the future, he said he was "concerned about the idea that for every additional euro that goes into the defense budget, another euro will go to the civilian sector should be provided". Corresponding demands come from the SPD and the Greens. According to Lindner, this form of political compensation is in the coalition agreement, "but that was before the turning point."

Lindner defended the German government's approach to arms deliveries to Ukraine. Unlike his party colleague Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann, he rejected a delivery of "Leopard 2" battle tanks at this point in time. "There can be no German going it alone," said Lindner. However, he also emphasized: "Ukraine must win this war." Should the USA deliver battle tanks, "a new decision would have to be made".

With a view to the operating times of the last three German nuclear power plants, which are now ending in April, Lindner said that if he had been able to decide on his own, the three nuclear power plants would have been operated with new fuel rods until spring 2024. "That would have had a positive effect on energy security and electricity prices, as well as a positive effect on German CO2 emissions. Within the federal government and the coalition, however, only operation by April 2023 was politically achievable." Lindner added: "The Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection has ultimate responsibility for energy security, energy prices and CO2 emissions."

Lindner can imagine an extension of the traffic light coalition beyond the current legislative period. The FDP will “go into the next federal elections as an independent force”, after which it should “decide on the basis of content” about the next federal government. "But if a government that has delivered good results and brought the country forward is confirmed - then there is nothing to be said against continuing. For me, it is still better not to govern than to govern incorrectly. But also the reverse: If you can govern well, you should you don't leave the country to others."

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