Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Finance Minister Christian Lindner, and Economy and Climate Minister Robert Habeck appeared before the Bundestag, the country’s lower house of parliament, on November 15th, 2023. A constitutional court ruling from last week has prohibited the transfer of 60 billion euros in unused funds from the pandemic to green projects, prompting a halt in spending from the economic stabilisation fund for the year.
According to a source close to the finance ministry, credit authorisations for the economic stabilisation fund can no longer be used in 2023 due to the current legal situation. All spending that has not been used this year is now blocked and requires approval from the finance ministry. The budget committee had previously been able to approve such spending. However, payments related to the energy price brake for this year are not affected by this ruling.
The decision to block spending from the ESF was first reported by Handelsblatt business daily. The government is currently working on finding a response to this ruling and its implications on blocked spending from the economic stabilisation fund for this year. As a result of this court ruling, payment requests related to green projects will be put on hold until further notice or until new legal conditions allow them to proceed.