Growth in Germany to fall to 1.5%, labour minister warns

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People work in the center of the North-Rhine Westphalian town of Bad Muenstereifel, south-west of Cologne, Germany, March 29, 2022. REUTERS/Thilo Schmuelgen

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s economic growth could fall to 1.4%-1.5% this year, from 2.7% in 2021, with an average of around 590,000 people on reduced-hours lay-off schemes over the course of the year, Labour Minister Hubertus Heil said in an interview with Bild am Sonntag.

“We will still be growing,” Heil said. “But this all subject to the proviso that the war does not spread further and that energy supply remains in place,” he added.

The government would provide further aid and support for lay-offs where possible to safeguard jobs if the situation worsened, Heil said.

Germany plans to offer more than 100 billion euros ($108.8 billion) worth of aid to companies hit by fallout from the war in Ukraine, according to a document seen by Reuters on Friday.

Finance Minister Christian Lindner is also planning to submit a supplementary budget to parliament in coming weeks to reflect the economic impact of the war, which would likely be worth at least 24 billion euros.

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