70pc of German tax goes for social spending

20th June 2006, Comments 0 comments

20 June 2006, BERLIN - Almost three-quarters of the German state's tax revenue goes for social spending, Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck told parliament on Tuesday.

20 June 2006

BERLIN - Almost three-quarters of the German state's tax revenue goes for social spending, Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck told parliament on Tuesday.

"We are carrying out social policies with 70 euro cents of every euro we take in," said Steinbrueck in a speech presenting the government's 2006 federal budget.

Steinbrueck said this figure showed claims by the opposition that the government was slashing back social welfare programmes were groundless.

Germany's parliament began debating the budget Tuesday with a vote on the 261.6 billion euro package due on Friday. The budget is expected to win easy approval given Chancellor Angela Merkel's big grand coalition majority.

The biggest single item in the budget is 119.5 billion euros for the Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs.

This is followed by 27.9 billion euros for the Defence Ministry and 23.7 billion euros for infrastructure and transport projects.

New borrowing totals 38.2 billion euros for the current year - the highest level ever seen in a federal German budget and some 7 billion euros more than last year.

Some 39.1 billion euros were budgeted for debt-servicing costs.

DPA

Subject: German news

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