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FDP parliamentary group leader Christian Dürr

Photo: Melissa Erichsen / dpa

After Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP), FDP parliamentary group leader Christian Dürr has also clearly committed himself to his party's stay in the traffic light coalition. He was reacting to speculation that the FDP could consider leaving the government in view of the unresolved budget dispute.

Asked about an initiative calling for a membership survey on whether the FDP should remain in government, Dürr told Deutschlandfunk on Monday that the hurdles in the party for such a survey were low. But: "It is my firm will that we continue to be part of a federal government that continues to shape things." Germany is on a reform course, including in the consolidation of public finances. "And we should not abandon this course. If the FDP weren't there, things would look different in Germany, we would probably have similarly high debt levels as in Corona times, and that would be wrong."

The traffic light coalition is struggling to plug a 17 billion euro hole in the 2024 budget and to enable billions in investments in climate protection and the modernization of the economy in the coming years. Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (Greens) and Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) had postponed their talks on Sunday evening in the Chancellery. Initially, nothing was known about the course of events.

Dürr was optimistic that the budget gap could be closed. It is a matter of finding a solution in peace. "Nothing is at risk, on January 1 all the statutory benefits that are already there will be paid out." It would not be a problem if the federal budget were not to be adopted until next year.

Wissing had already made a similar statement on Sunday evening. "The FDP wants to shape this country," the FDP politician emphasized on ARD. He referred to an enormous investment backlog, for example in the railways. "We want to work through this, we want to move our country forward, we want to put Germany back on track for growth." To the question: "In the government?" Wissing answered: "Absolutely."