Left calls for “protective shield for East Germany” because of inflation

Because of the rapidly increasing prices for energy and food, the left is demanding further relief for the citizens and in particular a “protective shield for East Germany”. The eastern federal states would be particularly affected by the development, according to a motion by the left-wing faction in the Bundestag, which is available to the German Press Agency. Union parliamentary group leader Sepp Müller (CDU) also criticized: “The current federal government has failed with its measures.”

An eight-point plan by the left advocates, among other things, an extension of the nine-euro ticket at least until the end of the year. Other proposals are: an “emergency plan” for energy supply at “affordable prices”; a reduced VAT on basic foodstuffs; a reduction in fuel prices with proceeds from an excess profits tax for oil companies; the extension of the government’s plans to include pensioners and students; a “functioning state energy price supervision” within six months.

Linke: This aid should only come for the East

There are two additional demands, especially for the East: a rescue fund for East German companies that prevents insolvencies due to price increases and the oil embargo against Russia; and a stock and job guarantee for the PCK oil refinery in Schwedt. The plant processes Russian oil from the Druzhba pipeline, which the federal government wants to forego as part of the EU embargo. She is looking for alternatives.

“The EU-wide oil embargo on Russia will hit eastern Germany much harder than the western federal states,” the left-wing motion states. From the point of view of the left, inflation is also having a greater impact in the east: lower incomes are being met with sometimes even higher price increases.

The comparison portal Verivox has determined that the costs for gas for an average household in the East are 14 percent higher than the national average. Mathematically, that’s an average of around 400 euros more per year. This is due to the higher consumption due to a lack of renovation, but also to higher prices in absolute terms, the Verivox experts calculated this week. The average additional costs are highest in Saxony: 36 percent more than the national average.

CDU politician Müller, the East German Commissioner for the Union faction, also demands far-reaching additional relief – targeted for low earners, the working middle class and pensioners. However, he pointed out that the financial burden throughout Germany was at its maximum. Countermeasures are “not a question of direction, but a question of respect,” said Müller of the dpa. In contrast to the left, he criticized the nine-euro ticket for local public transport: “Rural areas subsidize the cities with the nine-euro ticket. That applies to both East and West.”

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