“It is impossible for this to end without loss to German society, it is unthinkable,” Robert Habeck, public broadcaster ZDF, said on Wednesday. “I believe that we are ready to pay this price, which is quite small compared to the suffering in Ukraine.”
According to preliminary data, inflation in March amounted to 7.3%, according to the country’s Federal Statistical Office. This is the highest level in over 40 years.
The main culprit: rising prices for natural gas and oil, which are up nearly 40% year-over-year.
“High dependence on energy supplies from Russia carries with it a significant risk of lower output and even a recession with much higher inflation,” the German Council of Economic Experts said in a statement on Wednesday.
“Germany must immediately do everything possible to take precautionary measures against the suspension of energy supplies from Russia and quickly end its dependence on Russian energy sources.”
The council cut its forecast for GDP growth this year to 1.8% from 4.6% in December, citing inflationary forces and supply chain disruptions caused by the war in Ukraine.
— Inke Kappeler and Mark Thompson contributed reporting.