The comeback of Cem Özdemir – Handelsblatt Morning Briefing

From a political point of view, Cem Özdemir has a few advantages for a new cabinet line-up. In the federal elections, the Green won a direct mandate with an impressive 40 percent in Stuttgart; secondly, he has the strong Baden-Württemberg state association behind him and also has a migration background.

In the difficult political equilibrium of his party – fifty-fifty on gender and on the left-right question – the Swabian brings so much that he is now Federal Minister of Agriculture. The leftist Anton Hofreiter, who was actually considered to be ministerial, got the short straw in the party council against the boisterous Realo.

The personnel list now looks like this: Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (economy, energy, climate), Annalena Baerbock (outside), Steffi Lemke (environment), Anne Spiegel (family) and Claudia Roth (culture / media) – for whom Katrin Göring-Eckardt could become the new Vice President of the Bundestag . Now the members vote on the negotiated coalition agreement within ten days, personally sung by Co-Chef Habeck: “Let us rule Germany.”

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The basic problem is clear: the volume of future tasks is far greater than the available resources. You still have to invest, so housekeeping becomes creative – which Kay Scheller, President of the Federal Audit Office, criticized in the Handelsblatt bitterly.

He is bothered by the idea of ​​putting 60 billion euros that were once planned for Corona aid, but that are not needed, into the energy and climate fund. That is “constitutionally problematic,” says Scheller. Normally one would have simply reduced the loan requirement in 2021, now the debts would still be taken out “in order to have room for maneuver in the future”.

The president also called the traffic light coalition’s plan to pay off the corona debts later as problematic. The only good thing he actually thinks is the commitment to solid finances – but that too is “vague”. By the way, everything about the coalition agreement and the “Alliance of Great Promises” can be found in the title report of the current weekend edition.

Reinhard Ploss, 65, as CEO of the chip manufacturer Infineon, did not really play the big stage. But he also quietly brought his company into the top ten in the semiconductor industry – through the multi-billion dollar takeovers of US rivals International Rectifier and Cypress. It will now stop in April, nine months earlier than previously communicated.

His successor is electrical engineer Jochen Hanebeck, 53, who has a five-year contract. Born in Dortmund, he joined Infineon in 1994 as a development engineer and has been responsible for operational business as Chief Operating Officer since 2016. He knows Hanebeck as a “competent and reliable colleague”, praises his mentor Ploss. Looks like the normal retirement age, and yet Wilhelm Busch applies: “Usually when two divorce / one has to suffer a little more.”

EY audited the balance sheets of the payment service provider Wirecard, which went bankrupt in 2020, from 2009 to 2018 without any restrictions.

(Foto: LightRocket via Getty Images)

Wirecard and no end: The bad news for the accounting firm EY, which is involved in the bankruptcy group, does not end. The Chamber of Public Accountants Supervision (APAS) is investigating at least seven EY employees, including the former Germany boss Hubert Barth, as my colleagues have learned. So far there has been talk of actions against only three examiners. In detail it is about …

  • possibly negligent action when preparing the attestation for the year 2016
  • possibly unchecked contradictions in statements of the Wirecard management board as well as
  • suspected internal quality controls at EY.

It seems as if it were here like Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: “Every solution to a problem is a new problem.”

The new federal treasurer Christian Lindner (FDP) also wants to facilitate his financial planning by selling state holdings. That fits in with the liberal party program and brings a lot of money. According to our information, the logistics subsidiary Schenker of Deutsche Bahn is a sure candidate on the sell-out list.

The responsible Ministry of Transport will conveniently be headed by the FDP politician Volker Wissing. The plans for the sale are in the drawer. In the event of a possible deal in the second half of 2022, the Bahn subsidiary, including debts, could be valued at around 15 to 20 billion euros. In addition to the Danish logistics group DSV, well-known financial investors such as Carlyle, CVC, BX, KKR, Cinven, Advent and Bain are said to be interested.

Large foreign banks and institutional investors such as pension funds are withdrawing their money from Turkey.

(Foto: Bloomberg)

The Turkish lira provides a tragedy: The state’s currency lost around a fifth of its value against the euro in November. Shopping is becoming more and more expensive for citizens in this location – which is why Apple is stopping the sale of iPhones in Turkey. Most of the trade in fertilizers and pesticides was also suspended. This is easier for the provider than prices that fluctuate strongly every day.

The current inflation rate is around 20 percent. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is high in the hit list of the most dangerous autocrats, sees himself in an “economic war of independence”. His party’s all-too-simple advice to the citizens: Instead of two kilos of meat, you should only eat 500 grams per month.

My cultural tip for the weekend: “Respect” by director Liesl Tommy about the life of the American soul singer Aretha Franklin (1942 – 2018). The star of the film is the music, which forces the leading actress Jennifer Hudson to perform brilliantly.

She hits the tone and character with the utmost goodness in this biopic that leaves nothing out in the wild life of Aretha Franklin: the dominant father – Reverend Franklin, who drives “Re” again and again – the stress with the sisters, the career leap with the change to Atlantic Records and the incomparable “I Never Loved a Man (the Way I Love You)”, their unhappy loved ones, the fight against discrimination against blacks and women, alcohol.

The opulent 150-minute work is only surpassed by Aretha Franklin herself in the documentation of a gospel concert (“Amazing Grace”) from 1972, which was only published after her death.

And then there is the well-trained lawyer Michael Ott, who, as a member of the soccer record champions from Munich, took care of Bambule at Bayern. At the general meeting last night, his attempt to have the lucrative partnership with Qatar Airways debated failed.

With like-minded people, Ott wanted to get the club to put pressure on the subsidiary FC Bayern AG – in order to end the multi-million dollar contract with Qatar’s state airline, which runs until 2023. The Bureau did not allow that, with reference to decisions of local courts.
And so the frustration of the fans present, who criticize the human rights situation in Qatar, was released again and again at the end of the meeting in boos and populist demands: “Board out!” In the eyes of many members present, the club, which is proud of its “Winning culture” is not only a Qatar problem, but also a democracy problem. Supervisory board Uli Hoeneß: “That was the worst event I have ever seen at FC Bayern.”

I wish you a peaceful, relaxing weekend.

I warmly greet you
Hans-Jürgen Jakobs
Senior Editor

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