Germany amends constitution to limit fiscal deficit to 0.35% of the GDP

This is absolutely unexpected but such a positive news for all the Germans (and also for all the €-barers). Germany has introduced back in September (how come I missed that?) an amendment to its constitution which limits the government deficit to 0.35% of GDP and forces the landers (equivalent to the states in the USA) to balance their budgets.

There's a post on the Public Financial Manangement Blog of the IMF (Audit the Fed, then End it, then do the same with the IMF and the World Bank!):
The new constitutional fiscal rule limits the structural deficit of the Federation at 0.35 percent of GDP and requires structurally balanced budgets for the regions (Lander). The annual maximum permissible net borrowing is calculated every year by adding this structural component the expected balance of financial transactions and a cyclical component based on the output gap used as hypothesis for the preparation of the budget. Structural deviations from the allowed limit at the execution stage will be recorded in a control account and will have to be compensated by reductions of the net borrowing in the following years. Exceptions are only allowed in two cases (natural catastrophes and extraordinary emergencies necessitating special financing needs) and debt accumulated under these exceptions will have to be redeemed through a binding amortization plan. The rule will be fully applicable after a transition period until 2015 for the federation and 2019 for the Lander.
My only complain is: why 2015 and 2019? The sooner the better! One thing is almost certain, with such a massive constrain and so much time ahead of them, I'm pretty sure the Federal State and the Landers will load up with debt before the deadline...

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