EU migrant crisis: Germany can pay for incoming migrants without taking on new debt, says finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble
Today, German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble offered words of relief to taxpayers over the country's huge migrant influx.
During a parliamentary debate, he said Germany would not need to borrow any money to pay for the more than half a million refugees the country intends take in every year.
On Sunday evening, the government committed to freeing up €6bn from next year's €312bn budget to provide support to the new arrivals. Half of this will come from the federal government and half from regions and local authorities.
"We want to do this without issuing new debt. We shouldn't pass on the bill for the tasks that are facing us now to future generations," he told parliament, adding that handling the country’s largest influx of refugees since World War II will take “absolute priority”.
This is a test for Germany and Europe. It presents all of us, the state as well as society, with the biggest challenge we’ve seen for a long time.
A total of 800,000 migrants are expected to arrive in Germany over the course of this year, which is four times higher than in 2014. Today, vice chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said the country could cope with at least 500,000 new asylum seekers every year for the coming years.