• In­vi­ta­tion: 2019 Fis­cal Pol­i­cy Sem­i­nar

    The Federal Ministry of Finance will be hosting its second Fiscal Policy Seminar on 7-8 October 2019. The conference will offer participants a unique chance to engage in fruitful research and policy debates with academics and practitioners alike. This year, the theme is “Analysing developments in savings, investments and interest rates – reassessing the role of fiscal policies for growth and stabilisation”. We welcome registrations from persons with an academic background and an interest in fiscal policy.

  • Au­gust 2019 Month­ly Re­port

    The August edition of the ministry’s monthly report is now online. Every month we publish selected extracts from our monthly report in English. These extracts feature current data and information on federal budget trends, tax revenue, debt levels and guarantees, as well as key dates on the fiscal and economic policy agenda. The monthly report also includes interesting articles on topics within the Finance Ministry’s remit, a selection of which are translated into English each month.

  • Ger­man re­al prop­er­ty tax re­form – sim­ple, so­cial­ly eq­ui­table and com­pat­i­ble with the con­sti­tu­tion

    The German cabinet and the CDU/CSU and SPD parliamentary groups have adopted draft legislation to reform Germany’s real property tax. The aim is to make the tax simple, socially equitable and compatible with the constitution. Real property tax revenue will continue to accrue to the local authorities. Generating more revenue is not the objective of the reform.

  • Act to Com­bat Un­law­ful Em­ploy­ment and Ben­e­fit Fraud

    Germany adopted the Act to Combat Unlawful Employment and Benefit Fraud in June 2019. Initiated by Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, the new legislation gives major reinforcement to the customs administration’s special monitoring unit for undeclared work, which now gains a number of new powers and is set to receive a significant boost in staffing. This will enable the unit to fight unlawful employment and the misuse of government benefits more consistently and effectively.

    I believe that the new legislation combatting unlawful employment and benefit fraud will make Germany, and specifically the German labour market, a fairer, more orderly and more equitable place.
  • Eu­rogroup and ECOFIN meet­ings in June 2019

    The Eurogroup and ECOFIN convened for their most recent meetings in Luxembourg on 13-14 June. Major progress was made on reforms to the European Stability Mechanism, which is crucial for enhancing the stability of the banking union and the common currency. European finance ministers also agreed on the main features of a future budgetary instrument for the euro area. The financing for the budgetary instrument will be decided as part of the Multiannual Financial Framework. Progress was also achieved in plans to establish a financial transaction tax: its basic contours are to be defined this year in order to start levying the tax in 2021.

    It is a very good signal to send out after the European elections: Europe is making progress.

Content-related sites

  • Financial markets

    17 September 2019

    Joint State­ment on Li­bra

    At the meeting of eurozone finance ministers in Helsinki on 13 September 2019, Germany and France issued a joint statement on the digital currency Libra. Federal Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz and his French counterpart Bruno Le Maire oppose Facebook’s digital currency. They consider that the Libra project fails to convince that risks will be properly addressed.

  • Ministry

    13 August 2019

    5th Berlin‐Val­len­dar Con­fer­ence on Tax Re­search at the Ger­man Fi­nance Min­istry

    On 24 and 25 July 2019, researchers and government officials came together at the German Finance Ministry to discuss issues relating to national and international tax policy. The researchers presented the latest results of their ongoing research projects.

  • World

    24 July 2019

    G7 meet­ing in Chan­til­ly: fo­cus on sta­ble­coins and in­ter­na­tion­al tax pol­i­cy

    At their meeting in Chantilly (France) on 17 and 18 July, the G7 finance ministers and central bank governors discussed the risks associated with stablecoins. They reiterated the importance of a fair international tax system and, for the first time, agreed on the introduction of a global minimum effective corporate tax as an explicit aim.

  • Financial markets

    5 July 2019

    Cryp­to to­kens and dis­tribut­ed ledger tech­nol­o­gy – a fi­nan­cial mar­ket per­spec­tive

    Distributed ledger technology (DLT) is an emerging basic technology of the digital age. In order to address the challenges raised by this technology, the Federal Ministry of Finance is helping to create a national regulatory framework for crypto tokens with the aim of unlocking the potential of DLT and at the same time preventing misuse.

  • Financial markets

    12 June 2019

    Joint com­mu­niqué: The Cap­i­tal Mar­kets Union work­ing group is tak­ing shape

    The high-level working group proposed jointly in May by Germany, the Netherlands and France is now taking shape. On 12 June 2019, the first members of the high-level working group were announced. The group’s analysis and recommendations – which will flow into the CMU roadmap – are to be delivered no later than 30 September 2019.

  • World

    7 June 2019

    So­cial in­equal­i­ty and in­clu­sive growth

    Social inequality is a central subject in debates over economic and social policy. Along with inclusive growth, it has been on the G7 and G20 agenda for a number of years. In Germany, disposable income inequality is relatively low compared with other countries, even though the country performs less well when it comes to equality of wealth. The German government supports France’s initiative to make tackling inequality a key focus of its G7 presidency.

  • G20

    7 June 2019

    In­ter­view with Olaf Scholz in the Japanese busi­ness news­pa­per The Nikkei

    In an interview with The Nikkei, Japan’s leading business daily, Vice-Chancellor and Finance Minister Olaf Scholz discusses issues at the top of today’s fiscal policy agenda. In the run-up to the G20 meeting in Japan, he underlines how important it is for leaders to agree on an international system that ensures a minimum level of taxation. He also talks about current national projects such as the basic pension.

  • Financial markets

    6 June 2019

    Sus­tain­able Fi­nance Com­mit­tee takes up work

    The German government created a Sustainable Finance Committee on 6 June 2019. The Committee’s purpose is to advise the German government as it drafts and implements a sustainable finance strategy, as well as to pool existing expertise and foster dialogue between the relevant players. The Committee is made up of representatives from business, civil society and academia, as well as representatives from a number of federal ministries.

  • Taxation

    20 May 2019

    Sim­pli­fy­ing tax as­sess­ment for non-res­i­dent pen­sion­ers

    The Retirement Income Act, which came into effect on 1 January 2005, changed the way pensions are taxed. As a result of these changes, more and more pensioners are liable to pay tax, even if they live outside Germany. In the past, dealing with pensioners living abroad posed special challenges for the revenue administration, not least due to language barriers.

  • Financial markets

    17 May 2019

    Joint ini­tia­tive with the Nether­lands and France on the Cap­i­tal Mar­kets Union

    Finance Minister Olaf Scholz has teamed up with Wopke Hoekstra and Bruno Le Maire, the finance ministers of the Netherlands and France, to launch an initiative to advance the Capital Markets Union, a step that will durably strengthen the EU internal market. The three finance ministers want to set up a high-level group of experts that will formulate specific milestones this year for the integration of European capital markets.

  • Public Finances

    17 April 2019

    Ger­many adopts 2019 Sta­bil­i­ty Pro­gramme

    On 17 April 2019, the federal cabinet adopted the German Stability Programme for 2019. The programme shows that the available financial leeway will be used to further increase public investment in infrastructure, education and research. Last year, government investment increased to a record level of €78.9bn.

  • Financial markets

    15 April 2019

    Ten years af­ter the fi­nan­cial cri­sis: have reg­u­la­to­ry re­forms made the fi­nan­cial sec­tor more re­silient to cri­sis?

    How have the European regulatory reforms adopted since the global financial crisis affected Germany’s financial sector? The Federal Ministry of Finance recently commissioned a report to find this out. The report, which was produced by the SAFE Research Center at Frankfurt University, found that the policy measures adopted at the European level are proving effective and are enhancing financial stability.

  • World

    12 April 2019

    Ger­many con­tributes to glob­al fi­nan­cial sta­bil­i­ty

    During a recent visit to Washington, D.C., State Secretary Wolfgang Schmidt confirmed German financial support for two thematic technical assistance funds at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The funds help IMF member countries to improve their statistics systems and to make their financial markets more resilient against crises.

  • World

    12 April 2019

    Olaf Scholz on the transat­lantic part­ner­ship

    On 12 April 2019, Federal Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz gave a speech at the Peterson Institute for International Economics on "The Transatlantic Partnership: Common Values in a Changing World". He underlined the importance of a strong and stable European Union side by side with a powerful but principled United States of America.

  • Financial markets

    15 April 2019

    Two years on: the Fin­tech Coun­cil as a suc­cess­ful me­di­a­tor be­tween the po­lit­i­cal and the prac­ti­cal

    On 21 March, the Fintech Council convened for the first time with its new members at the German Ministry of Finance. The Council elected Christ Bartz as its new chair and adopted a position paper on regulating financial service providers’ use of cloud computing.

  • Financial markets

    3 April 2019

    Asian In­fras­truc­ture In­vest­ment Bank achieves ma­jor mile­stones in its first three years

    The AIIB has achieved major milestones since its launch as a new multilateral bank in 2016: The bank’s membership and project portfolio have grown. It is working together successfully with other multilateral banks. And the three leading rating agencies have awarded the bank top marks.

  • Taxation

    1 April 2019

    6th In­ter­na­tion­al Tax Sym­po­sium “150 Years of DTAs – Fit for Pur­pose?”

    To mark the 150th anniversary of double taxation agreements, the 6th International Tax Symposium on 8 May 2019 will focus on recent challenges in the area of German and international tax treaty policy. Against the backdrop of increasingly automated and digital economies, discussions will be held on the question of whether traditional taxation approaches are still fit for purpose.

  • Financial markets

    29 March 2019

    Key-is­sues pa­per on the reg­u­la­to­ry treat­ment of elec­tron­ic se­cu­ri­ties and cryp­to to­kens

    The Federal Ministry of Finance and the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection have jointly published a key-issues paper discussing the possible introduction of electronic securities and the regulation of public offers of certain crypto tokens. The paper forms part of efforts to strengthen Germany’s role as one of the world’s leading digital technology and fintech locations.

  • Taxation

    27 March 2019

    Ger­many and Nether­lands reaf­firm their com­mit­ment to com­bat­ing tax avoid­ance

    On 27 March 2019, German finance minister Olaf Scholz met Menno Snel, State Secretary for Finance at the Dutch Ministry of Finance. In a joint statement, the two countries reaffirmed their commitment to combating tax avoidance by agreeing and implementing the OECD and EU standards on base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS).

  • Financial markets

    19 March 2019

    Sus­tain­able Fi­nance Com­mit­tee takes up work

    The German government created a Sustainable Finance Committee on 6 June 2019. The Committee’s purpose is to advise the German government as it drafts and implements a sustainable finance strategy, as well as to pool existing expertise and foster dialogue between the relevant players. The Committee is made up of representatives from business, civil society and academia, as well as representatives from a number of federal ministries.

  • Taxation

    18 March 2019

    “We should agree on an in­ter­na­tion­al min­i­mum lev­el of tax­a­tion”

    In his speech at the Global Solutions Summit taking place in Berlin on 18 March 2019, German Finance Minister and Vice-Chancellor Olaf Scholz endorsed an international minimum level of taxation to ensure that states are able to finance their public goods. He also called for a multilateral approach, arguing that global problems such as climate change or social inequality can only be tackled through international cooperation.

  • Economy and Finances

    11 March 2019

    Key points of the 2019 An­nu­al Eco­nom­ic Re­port

    This year’s Annual Economic Report was adopted by the federal cabinet on 30 January 2019. The German economy is experiencing growth for the tenth year in a row. The German government’s economic and fiscal policies are still guided by the tenets of the social market economy. This article summarises the key points of the 2019 Annual Economic Report.

  • Ministry

    16 May 2019

    Call for Pa­pers: Fis­cal Pol­i­cy Sem­i­nar 2019

    For our next Fiscal Policy Seminar on 7-8 October 2019, the Federal Ministry of Finance is once again looking for research papers that present new and innovative ideas. This year’s theme is: “Analysing developments in savings, investments and interest rates – reassessing the role of fiscal policies for growth and stabilisation”. We are now accepting submissions.

  • Europe

    1 March 2019

    Eu­rope is Ger­many’s most press­ing na­tion­al in­ter­est

    Ahead of his trip to the Iberian Peninsula, German Finance Minister and Vice-Chancellor Olaf Scholz gave an interview to the Spanish newspaper El País and the Portuguese newspaper Expresso. He spoke about current European issues, underlining that it is not Germany’s role within the European Union to give advice to others. Instead, he affirmed that jointly-taken European decisions are what is needed to solve many of the urgent challenges.