Jamaica is not good for Germany

It is hardly surprising that the exploratory talks about a possible Jamaica coalition in Germany are stalling. Although the four parties – CDU, CSU, FDP and the Greens – are trying to identify common ground, the fundamental differences between the parties are already manifesting themselves even at such an early stage. There are significant differences especially concerning environmental policy, migration and immigration law issues and European policy. They are also very much at odds on other policies too, despite current attempts to bridge these with a great deal of goodwill. However, this is already an indication of the next fractures in a possible joint government policy. What is more, the Greens in particular are putting a lot of thought into the future allocation of ministries, thus giving a glimpse of the motivation of the many players.

If the parties do succeed in overcoming the greatest differences and forming a coalition, it is likely to be very weak from the very outset. In my opinion, there is simply too little common ground to form a viable concept for a stable government. It does not help either that Angela Merkel has clearly lost her appeal after the poor election results. It also seems clear that she will not run for office again after this legislative period. Future Chancellor Merkel will therefore most likely be made a lame duck from the very start, one who also has to preside over a mismatched government coalition.

This is not exactly the best basis for Germany as a business location. French President Macron is breathing new momentum into the political debate about the future of Europe and the Eurozone. The German government would also need a clear vision of the future of the Eurozone as well as the necessary clout to have a hand in channelling this momentum. I believe both are lacking and that Germany’s interests cannot be represented adequately as a result.

A better option in my opinion would be to dispense with a Jamaica coalition and aim for a minority government instead. The CDU/CSU Union parties would probably have to join forces with the FDP to secure the necessary majority, which should be possible nonetheless. Although a minority government and the constant search for majorities it involves would not be Angela Merkel’s preferred policy, one should not forget that all these party political tactics concern Germany’s future. Politics in Germany need to create a good environment. The economy is stable and has liberated itself from politics in many areas.

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