The FDP continues to oppose paying pensioners in Germany the so-called Energiepauschale, a 300 euro lump sum intended to provide relief to citizens in the event of a significant rise in energy prices. The party points to this year’s pension increase, which will take permanent effect as of 1 July and will amount to more than 5.3% in the western states and more than 6.1% in the eastern states. FDP parliamentary group vice-chairman Christoph Meyer told the Welt newspaper that he sees no justification for expanding the beneficiaries of the surcharge to include pensioners in connection with this increase.
The 300-euro lump sum for those in employment subject to income tax, due to be paid in September, is part of a package of reliefs with which the German government wants to support citizens against rising energy and other commodity prices. Other measures include a reduction in the energy tax on fuel, a one-time payment of 200 euros for Hartz IV recipients, an allowance of 20 euros a month for children in low-income households and a one-time allowance of 100 euros per child for all families.
FDP: reduced energy tax on fuel and €9 ticket also for pensioners
Numerous social associations and, among others, the German Trade Union Association (Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund, DGB) are calling for the Energiepauschale subsidy to be extended to pensioners and students. Many also attribute the FDP’s poor results in the last federal elections to the strong dissatisfaction of older voters with these decisions.
In contrast, according to the vice-chairman of the FDP’s parliamentary faction Christoph Meyer, the pension increase shows “that the coalition is not leaving pensioners out in the cold.” After all, the government has also initiated a number of other measures, such as a reduced energy tax on fuel, a €9 ticket and numerous other concessions. And these measures affect all citizens.
The CDU/CSU, on the other hand, has again advocated the expansion of the group of beneficiaries of the energy supplement. According to them, students, pensioners and young families should also be able to benefit from the subsidy. Jens Spahn (CDU), vice-chairman of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group stated: “Fuel and heating costs are likely to remain high. A one-time subsidy of 300 euros is still only a drop in the ocean of needs.”
“It is unfair that ministers and secretaries of state will receive an energy allowance and pensioners will not.”
The AfD parliamentary group’s social policy spokesman, René Springer, said: “Of course pensioners should also receive an energy allowance, especially since the pension increase is not even enough to compensate for the decline in purchasing power caused by inflation.” He added that employees and Hartz IV benefit recipients would benefit from the relief package, while pensioners were completely forgotten.
Also, Victor Perli, a member of the Left Party, called for pensioners to be included in the €300 lump sum. Many of them “fear another heating bill,” he said. “It is unfair that ministers and secretaries of state will receive an energy allowance and pensioners will not,” – The politician stressed.