Thursday, December 2, 2021

German Greens see slow progress in talks on new government

BERLIN (AP) – Germany’s environmentalist Greens are indicating talks to form a new governing coalition are progressing slowly and differences over climate policy remain.

The Greens last month negotiated a new government with centre-left Social Democrats and business-friendly Free Democrats after all three parties gained in Germany’s September 26 election. The coalition, in which Social Democrat Olaf Scholz would become chancellor, would send outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s centre-right union bloc In protest.

the parties said at that time He expects a coalition agreement to be ready at the end of November and Scholz will take over in the week starting December 6, but the Greens are questioning whether that timetable will apply.

Party general secretary Michael Kellner told DPA news agency on Thursday that “as far as the essence is concerned, we are seeing very little progress at the moment.”

Greens co-leader, Annalena Barbock, told RBB InfoRadio on Friday that she could not say when a coalition agreement would be ready because it was not yet clear when talks would end on several central issues.

“Negotiations don’t last more or less four days – we must take the time we need so that we can really renew Germany in the next four years,” he said.

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It is no surprise that negotiations, which outwardly have been unexpectedly harmonious, are proving difficult. The potential coalition brings together two traditionally left-leaning parties, a Free Democrat, which tends to ally with the centre-right.

A preliminary agreement last month left a lot of open questions. It called on Germany to accelerate the exit from coal-fired electricity, which is currently due by 2038, so it “ideally” occurs by 2030, and accelerate the “considerable” expansion of renewable energy generation. .

Potential partners said they would, at the insistence of the Free Democrats, not raise taxes or curb debt increases, making funding a central issue.

Bairbock will not elaborate on where exactly the differences lie. But she said protecting the climate should be a government priority, including in policy areas such as construction and transportation.

“A climate government cannot be run by just one partner,” Barbock said.

Follow AP’s coverage of Germany’s transition to the new government at https://apnews.com/hub/germany-election

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