Family Business: Energy and Europe - Urgent action areas
"The Union owes its electoral success to the great personal credibility of Angela Merkel", stated Prof. Dr. Dr. hc Brun-Hagen Hennerkes, CEO of Foundation for Family Businesses, when summarizing the results of the parliamentary elections. "The Union has been given a clear electoral mandate. Therefore, they must not enter into rotten compromises in the coalition negotiations. Family businesses are watching attentively to see whether the economic freedom required for Germany's competitiveness is maintained."
The new government has a good economic perspective to work from, "economists expect 2014 to bring growth of nearly two percent as well as rising tax revenue. This opens up room for the new government to manoeuvre that goes beyond a balanced budget. They can finally begin, like some German states, to reduce the national debt. And they must also reduce economic regulation", demanded Hennerkes.
In terms of energy costs, family businesses demand that the government acts quickly: "Family businesses need secure and affordable energy supply for continued success in international competition. Since the start of renewable energy policy a permanent subsidy has existed which has to a large extent turned off competitive market forces. The new government needs to break out of this vicious circle: They must embed German energy policy in European energy policy, put a lid on the EEG levy, and fine tune as well as balance the promotion of renewable energies, the network expansion and the strengthening of the base load with each other."
A political realignment also presents itself in European politics: "The mantra that the way out of the debt could only happen with further centralization in Europe, has had its day. Britain and the Netherlands have both already called for the EU Commission to check its task catalogue" explains Hennerkes. "The maxim must be European if necessary, national and regional if possible”. The Member States can do the job just as well or even better on their own. Family businesses expect that Chancellor Merkel pushes these reforms through in Europe."
The non-profit Foundation for Family Businesses has three main objectives: promoting the exchange of family business people, supporting research activities and institutions that deal with this particular type of company, and improving the perception of the family business in politics and the wider public. In addition, the Foundation is the point of contact for policy makers to address the specific needs of this type of company in legal, tax and economic policy issues.
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