Germany’s Finance Minister, Christian Lindner, spoke out on Monday about the importance of structural reforms to strengthen the country’s competitiveness. He emphasized that Germany is not a “sick man of Europe,” but rather an “unfit man in need of improvement.” Despite being considered healthy, Germany’s expected economic growth of 0.9% remains well below the 1.4% average for advanced economies in 2024. This is due to high energy costs, weak global orders and record-high interest rates.
The German economy was the weakest among its large Eurozone peers last year, leading some economists to label it as “the sick man of Europe.” However, Lindner highlighted that although the German economy is healthy, it is not in the best shape and is currently in a downturn, similar to the British economy. Germany was referred to as a “tired man” in need of structural reforms during the World Economic Forum in January.
To address this issue, Lindner specified that Germany needs to reduce red tape, attract workers into the labor market and mobilize private investment. He also highlighted the importance of creating a single capital market for private investment in the European Union. He believes that this is a more viable solution than continually providing subsidies as it is unlikely that any economy can sustain extensive subsidy payments.