German parties get record state handouts
Germany's political parties will receive more state money than ever before, it was reported on Monday. In the run-up to September's election, the country's parties will be fuelled by over €154 million.
The ruling Christian Democratic Union (CDU), the Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens, socialist Linke party, and the ailing junior coalition partner the Free Democratic Party (FDP) will be getting four percent more state funding this year, the Saarbrücker Zeitung reported.
Norbert Lammert, president of the Bundestag lower house of parliament, told the paper in an interview that the adjustment had been made to meet the parties' “typical needs” during an election year. In 2012, they all received around €150 million.
Germany's parties make far more than what they receive in state funding, though. The only figures available are those from 2011, which showed that when put together, political parties made around €433.5 million that year.
This comes from membership fees, donations, party assets, state funding and stakes in companies, and while these prove fruitful for most parties, the FDP was the only one not to turn a profit in 2011, booking losses of €414,000, Der Spiegel said on Monday.
The centre-left SPD saw the largest profits – at around €14.5 million, while the CDU received the most donations – €21.8 million.
Information has not yet been released on how 2013's money will be divided, but in 2011 the CDU got €44.64 million, its Bavarian sister party the CSU got €10.41 million, the SPD got €42.41 million, the Greens €13.81 million, the FDP €13.59 million and the Linke €12.13 million.