Green Transition Mustn’t Blow Up EU Debt, Austrian Hawk Says
(Bloomberg) -- European Union nations shouldn’t use energy transition as a pretext for raising debt levels, but rather focus on reining in deficits to prepare for future crises, according to Austria’s finance chief.
Most green investments will have to come from the private sector, Finance Minister Gernot Bluemel told Bloomberg Television on Monday. States should focus on facilitating that change, but shouldn’t necessarily be funding it, he said.
Bluemel made the comments as he was meeting his European peers in Brussels to discuss a rise in energy prices. Ministers were also discussing how to proceed with budget restrictions that have been waived during the pandemic to allow for stimulus.
A long-time advocate of stricter fiscal rules, Bluemel said European nations should return to tighter budget policies. Christian Lindner, who’s seen as the top candidate for German finance minister, would likely support such a stance, he said.
“I think we need to apply those rules properly because we need to prepare for the next crisis,” Bluemel said.
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