It happens all over the world: the year before parliamentary elections, the parties in charge announce a round of tax cuts – or, at any rate, they at least claim to cut taxes.
Germany, which will in 2017 hold parliamentary elections to the Bundestag, is no exception. In a statement posted just before Christmas, the coalition government claimed that its budget for next year includes no less than €6.3 billion ($6.6 billion) in tax cuts.
The tax cuts, which will kick in from the beginning of the new year, amount to the largest reductions since former chancellor Gerhard Schröder, a moderate Social Democrat, in the early years of the last decade.
But that doesn’t mean they’ll be felt by the German public.