The traffic light government’s pension package II is now coming. After a crisis summit in the Chancellery, the coalition agreed to push the package through the cabinet in May. Finance Minister Christian Lindner had previously surprisingly blocked the package.

Tuesday, May 14th, 8 p.m.: The FDP does not seem to be satisfied with the new pension package yet. But Finance Minister Christian Lindner and Chancellor Olaf Scholz apparently agreed with a handshake at last week’s crisis summit that the pension package should be passed through the cabinet in May. “Bild” reports on this, citing coalition circles.

“Christian Lindner can’t get out of this anymore. He has given his hand on it,” said a liberal to “Bild”.

4.21 p.m.: The traffic light coalition is postponing the decision on its planned pension package. As the German Press Agency learned from government circles on Tuesday, the draft will not be approved by the cabinet on Wednesday. However, it was agreed that this should happen in May, it was said.

3:32 p.m.: After Christian Lindner’s completely surprising stop to pension package II, anger at the finance minister is spreading in the traffic light coalition. The “Handelsblatt” quotes an unnamed politician from government circles: “I have never experienced anything like this,” it says. Lindner had previously criticized that some ministries had “submitted exorbitant wish lists”.

On Monday, the pension package II, which Christian Lindner and Hubertus Heil presented at a joint press conference on March 5th, should be added to the agenda of the cabinet meeting on Wednesday. But the planned item on the program fell off the list. The reason: Lindner’s State Secretary Steffen Saebisch is taking a stand, as “Bild” reports.

This came as a “complete surprise” to the rest of the government, insiders report. The farewell had already been postponed once. Instead of April 24th as planned, the vote within the cabinet was postponed to May 8th. Officially this happened because Lindner was on a trip to Turkey – unofficially because the FDP wanted to get through its party conference first, which took place on the last weekend in April.

According to “Bild”, Saebisch justifies the sudden turnaround with excessive budget registrations for 2025. Several ministries had exceeded the requirements of Lindner’s finance ministry by billions. However, it is difficult for those in the Chancellery to believe that. When it comes to pensions, the government has therefore agreed to an independent compromise that is separate from the budget negotiations, it is said.

With the sudden no, Lindner particularly offends Chancellor Olaf Scholz. It was he who pushed through the current pension agreement in the government. In addition, the head of government is said to be very close to the issue himself.

What is behind Lindner’s turnaround is currently unclear. But the finance minister will probably have to explain himself soon. He will meet Scholz and Economics Minister Robert Habeck in the Chancellery on Tuesday afternoon. Due to current circumstances, the long-planned date is now likely to become a pension crisis summit.

In addition, Scholz, Lindner and Habeck are under time pressure. According to “Bild”, government circles say that the pension package will have to go through the cabinet in the next few weeks. If this does not succeed, the foundation that manages the shares could no longer be legally established for 2024.

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