The ban on bonuses and dividends becomes a point of contention in the gas price brake

Rolf Mützenich (SPD, left), Britta Haßelmann (Greens) and Christian Dürr (FDP)

The leaders of the traffic light groups need to talk about the possible bonus and dividend ban as part of the gas price brake.

(Photo: IMAGO/Christian Spicker)

Berlin Thousands of companies in Germany should relieve the gas price brake from January. But the federal government’s aid program faces a significant hurdle: its own MPs. They see the government’s plans as contradicting their own decisions.

Ministries and the Chancellery agreed on Tuesday that companies may continue to pay bonuses and dividends – even if they make use of the gas price brake. A month ago, however, the traffic light representatives in the Bundestag budget committee passed a far-reaching stipulation: “no dividends, bonuses, special payments in the form of share packages or other separate remuneration” for users of the gas price brake.

And the resolution goes so far that the committee intends not to unlock the financial resources that are needed for the gas price brake.

No householder wants to comment publicly on the contradiction between the resolution and the government plan. Nevertheless, several MPs feel displeasure. “The federal government’s plan is a contradiction to our resolution,” says a householder.

Top jobs of the day

Find the best jobs now and
be notified by email.

Another explains that the law cannot remain as it is. A lot will depend on how the FDP positions itself. In the Budget Committee, the Liberals backed the SPD and Greens’ desire for a ban on bonuses and dividends.

>> Read here: Gas price brake and electricity price brake should apply retrospectively from January

Different perspectives can be heard from coalition partners. In the end, the parliamentary group leaders would have to decide, and FDP man Christian Dürr had already publicly positioned himself in favor of a ban on dividends. An FDP representative, on the other hand, points out that the stipulations can also be read in such a way that the traffic light does not call for a general ban at all.

Economics Grimm: “Rethink the attitude”

In fact, a ban on bonuses and dividends is provided for in the draft law from the Chancellery and ministries – but only for companies that receive direct equity support. According to experts, the ban on bonuses and dividends is about a lot. “One can only appeal to the budget holders in the Bundestag to reconsider their position on the ban on bonuses and dividends,” Veronika Grimm told the Handelsblatt.

The economy had headed the gas price brake expert commission set up by the government. She says: “A ban can undermine the goal of protecting Germany’s industrial core.”

Otherwise, many managers could run away when deciding on a location and claim the support without disadvantages for themselves or their managers in the USA or Asia. The President of the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK), Peter Adrian, warns of this. Especially managing directors of medium-sized companies often only have a low fixed salary and earn a large part of it through bonuses. In addition, the householders would have to reassess the issue.

After they had made the resolution, the EU Commission passed various restrictions on the gas price brake for industry, such as proof of a drop in profits or upper limits for subsidies. Adrian says: “I hope that makes sense to everyone in the Bundestag.”

More: How long does the gas last? These are the scenarios for the winter

source site-13