Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure DE-2022-47/3053 – measures in Germany
|Country||Germany , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Temporary, 14 November 2022 – 31 December 2023|
|Context||War in Ukraine|
|Type||Legislations or other statutory regulations|
Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Direct subsidies (full or partial)
|Author||Sandra Vogel (IW)|
|Measure added||14 February 2023 (updated 20 March 2023)|
Due to the rising inflation resulting from the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine, the federal government has adopted three relief packages during 2022. The first two relief packages stem from the first half of 2022. The third package from autumn 2022. All three packages are worth €95 billion. In addition, the federal government created a fund worth €200 billion to cushion the rising energy prices. Against this background, the federal government has also decided to use some additional measures to help companies with the rising inflation.
The federal government decided to introduce or continue using several tax reduction measures to unburden companies greatly affected by high energy prices.
To avoid that companies have to file for bankruptcy due to the rising inflation, the insolvency procedure was changed: the forecast period for the over-indebtedness test of affected companies was shortened from 12 to 4 months. In detail, this means that companies do not have to file for bankruptcy if their survival is sufficiently assured for a minimum of four months.
To ensure international competitiveness of energy-intensive German companies in manufacturing, these firms can apply to be compensated for the high energy and electricity taxes until the end of 2023. Companies applying for the compensation need to ensure that they implement energy saving measures at the establishment level.
Finally, to help business in the catering and restaurant sector, the federal government decided to prolong the lower sales tax on meal until the end of 2023. The reduced sales tax amounts to 7% instead of 19% and was introduced at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
When presenting the draft law, it was estimated that around 9,000 companies could profit from the energy and electricity compensation with a total amount of €1.7 billion. No data on the other measures yet.
|Does not apply to workers||
Sector specific set of companies
||Does not apply to citizens|
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Form||Direct consultation outside a formal body||Direct consultation outside a formal body|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
It is custom to ask for social partner positions on draft legislation or any major legislative changes in Germany.
The Federation of German Industries (BDI) criticised the the prolongation of the energy and electricity tax compensation for energy-intensive companies by another year as too short. In addition, the BDI stated that an overall reduction of the electricity was needed to safeguard German companies.
Eurofound (2023), Additional measures to unburden companies, measure DE-2022-47/3053 (measures in Germany), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/DE-2022-47_3053.html
30 January 2023
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12 September 2022
Although the worldwide pandemic situation had already disrupted supply chains and triggered increases in energy and food prices in 2021, the situation deteriorated in 2022 with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.Article
12 September 2022
This article summarises the first policy responses that governments across the EU have started to implement to support companies affected by the rising prices, and those with commercial ties to Ukraine, Russia or Belarus.Article
Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.