Status: 27/09/2023, 13:09 p.m.
By: Amy Walker
After 24 hours, the KfW Bank's subsidies for "solar power for electric cars" have been exhausted. An IT breakdown at the bank makes many people angry and disappointed.
Berlin – It was a rush with an announcement: Within just 24 hours, the funding pot for the "solar filling stations" was completely empty. 500 million euros were in the pot of the KfW Bank, enough for around 60,000 PV systems, estimates a solar company. Of this, the first 300 million euros are now gone.
But for KfW Bank and the Ministry of Transport, the start of the application process was anything but smooth. The development bank's application portal was overwhelmed all day long, and at times the system was not accessible at all. It is therefore not surprising that many people who have not received anything in the end are annoyed.
Rush for KfW funding: Disappointment over IT glitch
"I was one of the desperate people who had been trying to apply for funding all day from the start. I tried to submit an application at least 30 times, as recommended by repetition or starting anew, and failed again and again after entering the data in the subsidy calculation and/or at the end when sending the application, in each case due to reported technical malfunction of the website," writes a reader about his experience yesterday. "In the end, I didn't succeed."
This reader is anything but alone: In social media, such as on the short message service X, formerly Twitter, many users express their frustration. "Well done, a lottery would have been fairer," says one user. Another: "Seven hours in vain tried to apply for KfW funding for a PV system. Applying online via KfW is the absolute joke, server completely overloaded since this morning, form filled out about 20 times, sent 300 times, 300 errors".
So it was not a good day for KfW. Accordingly, the bank has now also spoken out on X to defend itself. "The program was so popular from the very first minute that the funds approved by the ministry for this year in the amount of 300 million euros were exhausted at about 1.40 a.m. However, the ministry plans to provide a further 200 million euros in the coming year," the bank tries to reassure. In the end, around 33,000 applications were approved until the stop was announced. "From the opening of the program in the morning until 18 p.m., over 190,000 visitors were recorded, including over 100,000 visitors in the first three hours of the application launch alone," the bank continued. However, she did not write anything about the IT problems.
Rush for solar subsidies was predictable
But the question for many now is: Could the ministry and KfW Bank have foreseen the onslaught? And if so, how can you and IT better prepare for it? At least experts warned in advance that the program would be popular. In a press release, for example, the provider Soly writes that they have been advising their customers for weeks and knew that there would be many applications. "Even before the official launch, Soly had warned that the subsidy could be sold out quickly," the company said.
"Above the level of 2023": Economic expert expects significant increase in pensions next year
Basic allowance and pension: This is how much is tax-free in 2023
"Unequal treatment" compared to pensioners: Demands for inflation premium for pensioners louder and louder
Fighter jet pilot in the Bundeswehr: This is how high the salary is
Big increase in pension in 2024 - then it's over
Fancy a voyage of discovery?
Solar modules are set up at a company's booth at the Intersolar trade fair. © Sven Hoppe/dpa
KfW also had to freeze applications for other promotional programmes after just a few hours. At the beginning of 2022, a subsidy program for energy-efficient new buildings ran empty within hours – for the second time in a row. However, no IT problems were reported at the time, so the uproar may have been less severe because of this.