Business Söder: Lufthansa rescue good example of state aid -...

Söder: Lufthansa rescue good example of state aid – criticism of the opposition 5/22/20

BERLIN (Dow Jones) – CSU boss Markus Söder has praised the nine billion euro rescue package for Lufthansa. “The current proposal is a very good one,” he said in the ZDF morning magazine. He was an example of “how you can help as a state without ultimately creating a state economy”. Lufthansa got into the crisis through no fault of its own. She now receives “substantial help” to get her up “without being nationalized”. Because that should not be the goal, emphasized Söder. “The state has to be like a dinghy that helps and stabilizes it then leaves and goes out after a while.”

The Greens, meanwhile, received sharp criticism of the deal. The government has been ripped off, fraction leader Anton Hofreiter told the Funke newspapers. It apparently wants to compensate for the losses of Lufthansa “without the state getting shares according to its use or making clear specifications for the large corporation”. That is an irresponsible handling of taxpayers’ money. Hofreiter called for “ecological conditions” for state aid. “We now have to bring economic aid and climate protection together, public funds must trigger a boost for innovation and climate protection,” he said. “Fossil fossils must not be subsidized with state money.” Hofreiter expects “that the deal will be improved”.

On the contrary, the FDP faction sees too much state influence. “This form of the chain of intervention must now be interrupted,” writes FDP parliamentary group member Michael Theurer in the Handelsblatt. For Lufthansa it probably means: Back to the 1950s. “The new entry of the federal government in the wake of the Corona consequences may seem necessary, but the offer now offered for direct participation must ring the alarm bells,” writes the spokesman for the political group. The Federal Government is apparently less concerned with saving the airline and its jobs, and more with direct state influence. “It doesn’t help that the blocking minority is not reached directly, but should only hang over Lufthansa via a convertible bond as a sword of Damocles.” It remains to be seen whether Lufthansa’s Annual General Meeting will approve such a package at all, said Theurer.

According to the government’s compromise, a third of the money will flow through KfW loans. The federal government wants 20 percent directly in the Dax company. The convertible share includes another five percent plus one share to avert a possible takeover attempt. Two seats on the Supervisory Board are expected to be filled by independent experts.

Contact the author: [email protected]

DJG / pso / jhe

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 22, 2020 03:53 ET (07:53 GMT)

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