Bundestag: Billions in risks due to corona masks: Traffic light wants clarification

Bundestag: Billions in risks due to corona masks: Traffic light wants clarification
Bundestag: Billions in risks due to corona masks: Traffic light wants clarification

In view of the billions of dollars in risks from Corona mask deliveries, the SPD, Greens and FDP want to provide clarification in the budget committee. Former Health Minister Spahn is expected to comment.

In view of the billions of euros in risks from disputes over the delivery of corona protective masks, the traffic light factions in the Bundestag want to provide clarification. The SPD, Greens and FDP requested that an item be added to the agenda for the meeting of the Budget Committee on Wednesday.

The chief budget officers Dennis Rohde (SPD), Sven-Christian Kindler (Greens) and Otto Fricke (FDP) explained: “The processes surrounding the purchase of protective masks at the beginning of the corona pandemic raise many questions. The ruling from Cologne has now significantly increased the federal government’s financial risk. As a coalition, we want to live up to our parliamentary responsibility and provide clarification. In doing so, however, we want to listen to all perspectives on what happened at the time and give the former Health Minister (Jens) Spahn the opportunity to comment on the not insignificant allegations that have been made.” This is a matter of fairness.

“We now need full clarification and transparency”

According to Green Party expert Janosch Dahmen, the coalition also wants to request a special meeting of the Health Committee. “We now need full clarification and transparency,” he told the German Press Agency. Many questions arose: “When were which contracts signed with whom? How much money went to whom?” Dahmen stressed: “In many areas of the health care system, there is a lack of money for important investments, while here the state could now be forced to pay billions for mask deals, some of which were never delivered, were rotten or were of inferior quality.”

As a response from the Ministry of Health to a query from FDP budget politician Karsten Klein revealed, the federal government is facing high financial risks from ongoing disputes over the supply of protective masks at special conditions during the coronavirus pandemic. According to the report, lawsuits have currently been filed in around 100 cases with a total value in dispute of 2.3 billion euros.

The background to this is the government procurement of urgently needed but very scarce masks for the health care system in the early phase of the Corona crisis in 2020. In order to be faster, the ministry used a special procedure in which supply contracts were concluded at fixed purchase prices without further negotiations. In many cases, the ministry later refused to pay, citing quality defects, among other things. Suppliers and dealers then filed lawsuits. In retrospect, criticism was also voiced that too many masks had been procured.

Source: Stern

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