Olaf Scholz becomes German Chancellor after reaching an alliance agreement

Olaf Scholz announced the alliance agreement between the Social Democrats, the Green Party and the liberals, which will enable him to succeed Angela Merkel as Chancellor of Germany and promised “Germany Realize the largest industrial modernization in more than 100 years”.

He stated that the agreement will pave the way for Germany to become a “climate protection pioneer”, adding that “we will make substantial investments to maintain Germany’s position as a world leader.” Green co-leader Annalena Baerbock said the new government will introduce “paradigm changes” in German politics.

The alliance agreement was the result of intense negotiations nearly two months after the Social Democrats raised objections. Won by a narrow margin in the national elections September 26.

Although Wednesday’s party leaders’ press conference focused on climate change, public investment and more workers’ rights, the new government’s most urgent priority will be to contain the pandemic that could sweep German hospitals. The authorities have reported 66,884 new coronavirus infections in the past 24 hours, which is a new record.

According to the alliance agreement, the Social Democratic Party will receive six ministries and the Prime Minister’s Office, while the Green Party will receive five and the Liberal Democratic Party (FDP) will receive four.

The Green Party will control the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the newly formed Ministry of Economy and Climate Protection. Although there was no official announcement, people close to the talks said that Belbok will lead the first one and Robert Habek, the co-leader of the Green Party, will lead the second.

Traffic light system: Green Party leaders Annalena Baerbock and Robert Habeck, third and fourth from left, SPD Prime Minister-designate Olaf Scholz, center, and FDP leader Christian Lindner, fourth from right, pictured after agreeing to the alliance agreement © Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty

Balbok stated that the two sides have agreed to “return to an active European foreign policy,” which is based on diplomacy and dialogue and “driven by values ​​and human rights.”

The Ministry of Finance chose the Liberal Democratic Party, which is known for its fiscal toughness: In Berlin, it is widely expected that the leader of the party, Christian Lindner, will become the minister.

In his speech on Wednesday afternoon, he said that the alliance agreement will ensure that Germany remains a “sound advocate.” [public] Finance-Given many people’s current concerns about inflation, this is important. ”

The September elections marked a watershed in German politics.Merkel Exit stage After serving as prime minister for four terms, her Christian Democratic Party fell into the worst situation. It was forced to oppose it for the first time in 16 years, and for the third time since World War II.

The poor performance of the CDU opened the way for Schultz to form a “traffic light” alliance with the Green Party and the Liberal Party-named after the traditional colors of the three parties. This will be the first such alliance at the national level in German history, and it is expected to put climate change at the top of its agenda.

The two sides agreed to advance the “ideal situation” for Germany to withdraw from coal to 2030 (currently planned for 2038). They also stated that they will ensure that renewable energy accounts for 80% of Germany’s electricity production by 2030, up from 45% last year. In addition, approximately 2% of German territory will be used for wind turbines.

The two parties also agreed to legalize adult marijuana, strengthen rent control, increase the minimum wage from 9.60 euros per hour to 12 euros, and allow the introduction of armed drones to better protect Bundeswehr soldiers.

All parties agreed to take a cautious approach to fiscal policy and insisted that Germany restores the “debt brake”The new borrowing limit set in the country’s constitution in 2023, which was suspended during the pandemic.

When asked how they will fund the planned investment while adhering to the debt brake, Habaek said “we know exactly how we will pay,” but did not provide more details.

The Social Democratic Party and the Liberal Democratic Party will hold a party meeting to approve the alliance agreement, and the Green Party will give it to all 125,000 members of the Eco-Party to vote. If approved, the new government will be sworn in early next month in the Bundestag.

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