Posts Tagged

Germany

Angela Merkel’s announcement on Monday to not run again in the 2021 election has initiated a period of transition in German politics. Yet, whether this process will last until the next election, as she suggested, is questionable. German chancellor, Angela Merkel, announced on Monday that she would not be running for a fifth term in office in the next federal election in 2021 and step down as the leader of her party in December. Her statement came less than 24 hour after her Christian Democratic Union party (CDU) had lost more than 10 percent of the votes in the state election of Hesse, marking the party’s worst result in the state since 1966. The election continued an overall downturn in …

On September 24th, Germans elected a new parliament. The CDU/CSU won 32.9%, the SPD 20.5%, the AfD 12.6%, the FDP 10.7%, the Green Party 8.9%, Die Linke 9.2%. This outcome, resulting in the presence of six parties in the Bundestag, will complicate the formation of a new governing coalition. The right-wing Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) will enter the German Bundestag for the first time, but is politically shunned by other parties. Die Linke is ideologically too far removed from the Conservatives to ever govern with them. The once proud and mighty German Social Democrats (SPD) have been humbled by the election. In consequence, the Social Democrats have announced their intention to go into opposition. Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU/CSU), while …

Summits are not just — or even mostly — about what happens in the formal leaders’ meetings. What happens on the sidelines often has the largest effect on steering the course of international politics. This is the first year that the G20 summit could end up as a failure, advancing little in the way of substantive progress on the global governance agenda, chiefly owing to the group now having to contend with Donald Trump taking America’s seat at the summit table. Trump’s ‘America First’ agenda — typified by its economic protectionism and rejection of the established multilateral order — is entirely antithetical to the G20’s previous commitments to reject protectionism and safeguard the liberal, rules-based, multilateral governance order. This year’s G20 …

Germany often encourages much jealous muttering. The country found an easier path than most through the global financial crisis and is now even touted as the world’s best nation (at least according to one survey). Besides stellar engineering and economic efficiency, the German model also stands for social equity. This “social market economy”, however, is increasingly put into question by the looming spectre of old age poverty. On the surface, all is well. Unlike many of its peers, the German pension system is in comparatively sound financial shape. Even though the number of working people per retiree is predicted to halve in the next 40 years, the share of GDP spent on pensions will increase by less than 2%. The …