SPD chancellor candidate Olaf Scholz wants to start an immediate program for the construction of hundreds of thousands of affordable rental and owner-occupied apartments in Germany in the event of a government under his leadership.

"Everywhere in Germany we experience that cheap rental apartments are in short supply and that many can no longer fulfill their dream of owning their own home," said Scholz of the "Augsburger Allgemeine" (Saturday edition).

"Every second household in Germany's cities is entitled to a housing entitlement certificate, which shows how many people earn little," said the SPD politician.

In order for rents and purchase prices to increase less strongly, 400,000 new apartments would have to be built across Germany, "including at least 100,000 publicly funded apartments," said Scholz.

"This is not rocket science - we just have to want to," he added.

“I want an alliance for housing from the federal government, states and municipalities, housing companies, the construction industry, as well as tenant and landlord associations.” Under him as Chancellor, the federal government will continue to promote social housing with investments.

The key role of local authorities

Scholz referred to his experiences as Hamburg's head of government.

As mayor, he organized a “huge housing construction program” there.

Therefore, he knows about the key role of the municipalities.

Specifically, the five-point program planned by Scholz, according to information from the “Augsburger Allgemeine”, provides for an “alliance for affordable housing” and the strengthening of the municipalities as well as a moratorium on rent for tense housing markets.

It should be stipulated by law that rents should only rise slightly over the next five years.

Search of ministries "remarkable process"

Meanwhile, there is growing criticism of Scholz's behavior with regard to the search in the Ministry of Finance, which he runs.

The deputy CDU chairman Jens Spahn asked Scholz to deal more with it.

"With Warburg, Wirecard and now with this raid, there are always many question marks left," said Spahn to the FAZ podcast for Germany.

The SPD puts the fight against money laundering "in the shop window", which is why questions arise now.

He could not comment in detail on the investigations against the anti-money laundering unit, which is under the legal supervision of the Ministry of Finance, said Spahn, but added: "As I know public prosecutors, you think three times whether you want one Step makes.

The search of two federal ministries is a remarkable process. "

Green chancellor candidate Annalena Baerbock has also accused her competitor Scholz of having done too little against money laundering.

Scholz as finance minister and the government coalition made up of the Union and the SPD had refused for years to take action against it, Baerbock told the “Augsburger Allgemeine” (Saturday).

“Germany is considered a paradise for criminals who launder their money here.” The fight against financial crime is “ultimately also a question of security”.

Structural problems at the FIU

Baerbock's party colleague Lisa Paus, financial policy spokeswoman for the Green parliamentary group, told the "Rheinische Post" (Saturday): "Olaf Scholz bears the main responsibility for the ongoing abuses at the FIU and thus also in the fight against money laundering in Germany." The FDP and the Left also criticized In the paper the minister: "Scholz realized much too late that this authority was not working," said the FDP politician Florian Toncar. The left-wing financial expert Fabio de Masi made a similar statement: “Scholz did not bother to fix the structural problems of the FIU. Money laundering scandals like Wirecard would have been an opportunity to get a real financial police on the way, ”he emphasized.

In investigations against employees of the anti-money laundering unit FIU, the Osnabrück public prosecutor had the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Justice searched ten days ago. The investigators wanted to gain access to e-mails between the FIU and the ministry. The question is whether the FIU passed on information from banks about terrorist financing to the police and the judiciary too late, so that the crimes could not be prevented. Scholz will be asked about the raid on Monday in the Bundestag Finance Committee.