Sigmar Gabriel paid as a consultant to meat company Tönnies

Dhe former SPD leader Sigmar Gabriel has been paid as a consultant by meat producer Tönnies, according to a media report. The former Federal Minister of Economics had worked for the group from March 2020 until at least the end of May 2020, the ARD magazine “Panorama” reported on Thursday. Accordingly, Gabriel has apparently previously received a flat fee of 10,000 euros per month and an additional four-digit fee for each day of travel. According to “Panorama”, the activity should last two years.

When asked to “panorama”, Gabriel reported that his private sector activities were not subject to publication requirements. He always has to protect the interests of third parties when providing information to the media. Nevertheless, he confirmed that he had worked for Tönnies from March 1, 2020. He advised the company on impending export problems related to African swine fever.

Gabriel explained that he had now finished his job: “I had to quit this job on May 31, 2020 due to a difficult illness and a complicated operation that became necessary for me.” At the time, it was not clear to him whether and when he could resume his professional activities.

Tönnies is under massive pressure

Neither he nor his business partners see the previous advisory work for the Tönnies company as problematic, the former minister said. He answered the “Panorama” request “due to the special public interest in the present case”. After “panorama” research, company boss Clemens Tönnies personally looked after the Gabriel staff. As can be seen from the documents available to the magazine, the former minister should “make his extensive contacts available to the Tönnies Group and actively support projects”. It was particularly about the Chinese market.

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