Ways to get out of the crisis – “It’s not from 5 to 12 – it’s from 1 to 12!”


Chamber of Commerce boss Harald Mahrer and Labor Minister Martin Kocher for the first time in the large “Krone” double interview.

How dangerous is an imminent stop of Russia’s gas supply? Is the economy turning around? Pure drama and reason enough to do a double interview on this topical subject: The deputy editor-in-chief of the Crown, Georg Wailand, asked the chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Martin Kocher, the Minister of Labor and Economic Affairs, about the current situation .

„krone“: How critical is the situation really?
It’s not from 5 to 12, it’s from 1 to 12. It takes courage and pragmatism. The energy costs of gas are five times higher than in the US for our economy. And the wholesale energy prices on the stock exchange indicate that everything will become even more expensive.
Kocher: The uncertainty is greater than ever. We are now passengers in the general geopolitical situation and not at the wheel.
Maher: An example of this is the huge traffic jam on container ships in Asia, which also causes problems in many supply chains, so we have to try to drive by sight.

But isn’t the economy booming?
Yes, economic growth is very encouraging. We need to keep three areas running: domestic consumption, investment and export.
Kocher: It is an extraordinary situation: we have war on our doorstep, but there is still no reason to panic. The companies are urgently looking for additional employees, which is a clear sign that the companies have sufficient assignments. However, in such a crisis scenario you have to act quickly, it is not possible to get out of gas dependence within one or two years.

Maher: We have deliberately avoided nuclear energy, gas will be a bridging energy source for a long time to come. So we need gas supplies from other regions. Despite all the fear of crisis: the economy is missing thousands of skilled workers…
Kocher: Yes, the slogan: The world has almost run out of work, was completely wrong. We have already integrated 7,000 refugees from Ukraine into the labor market.

The population is wondering: who should fund all the state aid? Will we have to deal with tax increases?
Maher: No, that would be really insane. It can also be different: we have to keep the economy going, the tax revenue of the Minister of Finance is bubbling up like never before, we don’t have to worry too much if the economy continues to go on.
Kocher: It will be important that there is no fear of saving. But the development of tourism is encouraging, we can rely on that.

Source: Krone


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