April 27, 2013
Over the past few years, Europeans have been bombarded with media accounts of the so-called “ German miracle” and the role of Schroeder’s Agenda 2010 in generating it.
Guillaume Duval, editor-in-chief of Alternatives Economiques (France) has recently published a book on the subject, “ MADE IN GERMANY : Le modèle Allemand au-delà des mythes “. An engineer with years of work experience in Germany, Duval considers the claim that Agenda 2010 was responsible for Germany’s current economic health as bogus. According to him, factors like the unique structure of German industry, strong syndicates, good vocational training , lack of a real estate bubble and a very favorable international context ( the opening up of Eastern European markets, the strong growth in China and Latin America ) were instead instrumental in Germany’s good economic performance.
Schroeder’s measures – reduction of companies’ fiscal contributions,the lowering of unemployment benefits, of medical coverage for employees, reduction of pensions, etc – have in fact weakened the long -term prospects of the German economy and greatly increased poverty and income inequalities . The dire situation of pensioners, for example, has alarmed in 2012 Ursula von der Leyden, the current German labour minister. According to calculations made by her ministry’s experts, even employees who currently earn 2500 euros per month, working the mandatory 35 years before retiring, will collect a monthly pension of only 688 euros in 2030…
You could also read my post on this subject on Europe’s World by clicking HERE:Florian Pantazi