Only in the evening, the Bundestag decided on a rescue fund for troubled companies in the corona crisis worth billions: Companies should be strengthened with capital and guarantees through an “economic stabilization fund”. If necessary, the state should be able to participate in companies, as in the financial crisis more than ten years ago. It is currently unclear which companies could slip under this rescue package. It has a total volume of EUR 600 billion.
But Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz is already thinking ahead. He expects to be able to sell potential state holdings in companies, some of them at a profit. “Of course, the state does not want to keep the shares in the long term, but wants to secure the company’s survival in the crisis,” said the SPD politician ofRheinische Post“When the situation has normalized, we want to sell it again,” said Scholz, “We are betting that the economic recovery will be so great that we will sell it partially at a profit to cover losses in other areas. “
Scholz described the Corona crisis as “the greatest economic challenge in the history of the Federal Republic”. Regarding the aid package approved by the Bundestag on Wednesday, for which the federal government is to incur new debts amounting to 156 billion euros, Scholz said: “We will be able to cope with this for a while.” The decision was made to consciously “send a strong, determined signal right from the start, instead of applying to the Bundestag for additional funds every few weeks”.
Mittelstand warns of mass extinction of companies
There are emergency loans for entrepreneurs and an aid package for solo self-employed and small entrepreneurs. The companies pounce on the Corona help. However, despite the aid packages, small and medium-sized businesses are already warning of the mass extinction of companies. The situation is dramatic, said the president of the Mittelstandsverbund, Eckhard Schwarzer, the editorial network Germany. Furniture retailers, textile and fashion sellers, shoe stores, DIY megastores with garden centers and many others feared for their existence.
“All of these small and medium-sized companies will not take a single euro overnight. There has never been anything like this,” said Schwarzer, whose association includes 230,000 medium-sized companies from the retail and cooperating sectors. The federal government’s aid packages may not be on time for many companies, many companies are already in acute financial distress.
Schwarzer said that the trade had already suffered massive damage, especially traders whose business is seasonal. Garden centers, for example, have already received their goods for spring and for the most part have already paid for them. Fashion shops are currently being supplied with the summer collection. “When the business starts again in the summer, the retailers can no longer sell spring flowers. And the swimwear business is actually over, too. These goods are already practically worthless.
Scholz wants to review the economic stimulus package after the crisis
The president of the Federal Association of Small and Medium-Sized Businesses, Mario Ohoven, urged the federal government to develop a strategy for a start-up of companies after the crisis. “To do this, the ability of small and medium-sized companies to work must be ensured. Otherwise, there is a risk of sustained loss of wealth,” said Ohoven. “We’re talking about a few weeks, not months.”
With a view to the time after the epidemic subsided, Finance Minister Scholz told the “Rheinische Post”: “If the virus is not as rampant as it is today, we will have to consider whether a targeted stimulus package is needed to stimulate the economy.”