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Commuter flat-rate: IfW economists criticize Armin Laschet's demand for an increase


The gasoline prices are rising, to compensate Armin Laschet wants to increase the commuter allowance. But leading economists warn that higher income groups would benefit above all.

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Gabriel Felbermayr: A per capita reimbursement for social equalization makes more sense (archive image)

Photo: Carsten Rehder / dpa

On Sunday, Armin Laschet called for a “socially acceptable energy transition”.

Among other things, he would like to increase the commuter allowance in order to relieve motorists financially when gasoline prices rise.

The President of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, Gabriel Felbermayr, rejects this request.

He told the Rheinische Post that.

"An increase in the commuter break would primarily benefit higher income groups with higher tax rates," says Felbermayr. The right step for social equilibrium is a per capita reimbursement of the income from CO2 pricing. Low-income households would benefit more. This should further strengthen the political acceptance of CO2 pricing.

According to the report of the »Rheinische Post«, the President of the RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research in Essen, Christoph Schmidt, also sees Laschet's plans critically. From his point of view, too, the increase in the commuter allowance is less suitable as an instrument of social compensation. In principle, it is right to think about offsetting, especially for lower-income households, when it comes to CO2 pricing, says Schmidt. Only in this way would the higher CO2 prices remain acceptable to the majority of the population. For him, too, a per capita reimbursement sounds more productive.

On the occasion of the Green Party Congress, Laschet had positioned himself on demands of the Greens in the election campaign and strictly rejected key points.

Among other things, he criticized the Greens' plans for the energy transition.

These are not socially acceptable.

Going on vacation should not be a privilege for the few, said the CDU politician.


Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2021-06-17

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