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Lothar de Maizière's Government Program (April 19, 1990)

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The actual problems of our world – we all know it – are not German-German or East-West problems. The actual problems stem from the structural inequity between North and South.

If a mortal threat to human life is not to emerge from this inequity, then we, too, must participate in fighting it. The establishment of a more just international economic order is not only a matter for the Great Powers or the U.N.; rather, it is the task of every member of the community of nations.

The peaceful coexistence of Germans and foreigners in our country can also contribute to a new quality of togetherness among different peoples.

Clarifying the legal situation of our fellow citizens of foreign descent and appointing representatives for foreigners at different levels will be just as necessary as promoting initiatives that allow cultural diversity to be experienced as enrichment. The liberation of Nelson Mandela and the abolition of apartheid in South Africa, the fate of the tropical rain forests, aid for the Third World – these problems concern us just as much as our own do. In fact, they are our own problems.

We know that our ability to solve our own problems depends on how ready we are to see the problems of others as well.

Madam President,
Distinguished members of parliament!

The coalition government that has been formed faces great, difficult, and very concrete tasks that require clear and strategic decisions.

The economic policy goal of the coalition government involves converting the previous state-controlled command economy into an ecologically-oriented social market economy.

As Much Market as Possible and as Much State as Necessary
The transition from a state planned economy to a social market economy must proceed in quick but orderly steps. Over the next several months, both will have to exist side by side, whereby we need to work according to the motto, "as much market as possible and as much state as necessary." In this context, we attach the utmost importance to competition among all enterprises. It is the most important regulating factor in a market economy.

The governing coalition will pass laws to promote the stability and growth of the economy, an anti-trust law, a revision of the banking law, and above all it will introduce a law on breaking up combines and large-scale enterprises in order to create productive enterprise units typical for their respective branches.

In this context, the functions and structure of the Trusteeship Agency [Treuhand-Anstalt] need to be fashioned in such a way that an instrument is created with which to break up state-owned enterprises and convert them into appropriate organizational forms. The dismantling of the planning system, as it has existed until now, should be largely complete by the time the monetary union takes effect.

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