Impulses for the stimulation of the economy

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The corona pandemic and the lockdown to contain it have hit society and industry hard - with hitherto unforeseeable consequences. In particular, companies acutely need sufficient liquidity to cope with the direct and indirect consequences of the pandemic and to bridge the period until the economy picks up again.

Joint press release by VCI, VDA, VDMA and ZVEI

We welcome in principle the measures introduced by the Federal Government. However, we are now entering the next phase and urgently need a new spirit of optimism. To achieve this, we must think one step further and set the course to flank the recovery of our industry with economic policy. We need a fitness programme that will be effective in summer and autumn and beyond. To reinforce the BDI's 6-point plan, four major German industrial sectors - automotive, chemicals, electrical and mechanical engineering - consider the following fields of action to be particularly important and a priority, and are entering into a joint exchange with politicians on these issues.

Field of action: Taxes
In addition to the immediate measures already adopted, companies and consumers need tax relief quickly. This should also be seen against the background that corporate taxes in Germany currently occupy a leading position in an international comparison.

A significant expansion of the loss carryback until and including 2017 should provide companies with liquidity for investments.
Corporate taxes must be reduced to an internationally competitive level, and corporate tax law must be structurally modernised to provide additional economic stimulus and keep companies in business.
The solidarity surcharge must be abolished immediately and completely - this would benefit all taxpayers and companies of all sizes.

Field of action: Investments In
order not only to leave debts in the public budgets of the next few years, but also to create countervalues that will last as long as possible, a focus must be placed on private and public investments. In addition to their positive income effects, they also strengthen the production potential of the economy.

Improved depreciation conditions for capital goods can provide incentives for more private investment and thus for more growth. This applies in particular to da degressive depreciation. It reflects the actual value consumption of fixed assets comparatively well. In contrast to specific investment grants, it is not only a specific clientele that benefits here, but every company that drives investment and innovation.

Additional incentives for innovation are achieved by expanding tax incentives for research. Here the current cap should at least be raised or temporarily abolished altogether. As a result, not only SMEs but all other companies will then have greater incentives to invest in the future in Germany.

In addition, incentives for private investment should be flanked by more public investment. In order to avoid losing oneself in a conglomeration of individual measures, the focus must be placed on infrastructure - especially digital infrastructure. If all industries and sectors benefit from this, the broadest impact could be achieved. The same applies to public investment in education.

Finally, a general moratorium on burdens - at least until the end of the year - is needed so that investment and entrepreneurial activity is not hindered by additional bureaucratic and regulatory regulations.

Field of action Energy
Even before the Corona crisis, the high level of energy costs reduced the international competitiveness of the companies producing here. In order to expand companies' scope for investment and to promote production and the conversion of production processes to clean energy and electricity, the burdens must be significantly reduced.

The state-induced cost shares in energy prices must be reformed sustainably and geared to climate impact, so that in the long term they will noticeably decrease for climate-neutral energy sources. In this way, additional funds can be mobilized for the development of new sustainable economic structures:

We call for an accelerated digitalization of the energy system, reduction of bureaucracy and a perspective for a significant relief of burdens for climate-neutral energy sources. The EEG levy must be reduced quickly and significantly, the already planned reductions in grid fees must be brought forward, and the hydrogen strategy must be strengthened and accelerated.

The four industrial associations VCI, VDA, VDMA and ZVEI represent the interests of over 3 million employees in industry.

Contact person for the press:

Verband der Chemischen Industrie (VCI)
Jenni Glaser, Phone: 49 69 2556-1377, E-Mail: glaser@vci.de

Verband der Automobilindustrie (VDA)
Eckehart Rotter, Phone: 49 30 897842-120, E-Mail: eckehart.rotter@vda.de

German Engineering Federation (VDMA)
Holger Paul, Phone: 49 69 66 03-1922, E-Mail: holger.paul@vdma.org

ZVEI - German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association
Thorsten Meier, phone: 49 69 6302-425, e-mail: meier@zvei.org