Chancellor Scholz is the former vice president of the International Union of Socialist Youth and has been the German government's finance minister for the last eight years. He has a long history of international work, including working on the UNESCO committee on cultural diversity and the EU commission. He is also known for his support for the ratification of the Paris Agreement on climate change. He was also the co-chair of the European Union's Climate Change Task Force, and has been a leader of the German government's efforts to create a clean economy.
Former vice president of the International Union of Socialist Youth
During her term as Vice President of the International Union of Socialist Youth, Benedicta Lasi represented the organisation at meetings with the Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez. The two leaders demonstrated good prospects for fruitful working relations. The IUSY has a consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
The International Union of Socialist Youth is an international political youth organization that promotes democracy, human rights, and equality. It is the world's largest non-governmental youth organization. It brings together socialist, social democratic, and labor political youth organizations from around the globe. It works to strengthen these organisations and to engage international institutions and governments in the fight for freedom, justice, and equality.
The IUSY was formed in Paris on 30 September 1946. It is the official youth organisation of the Socialist International, an international organization of political parties that seeks to advance socio-economic and environmental solidarity and democratic socialism. It includes 132 member parties from over 100 countries. Its central board is headed by Jens Stoltenberg, who was a member of the AUF's central board from 1979 to 1989. He was also the leader of the Norwegian Labour Party from 1990 to 1992.
During the IUSY World Congress, the organisation elected its new leadership. In addition to the president, the congress elected the Secretary General, the Control Commission, and a number of deputies. During the meeting, the IUSY reaffirmed its position on the Armenian Genocide. The IUSY also called for UNESCO to preserve the country's cultural heritage and to demand reparations from Azerbaijan for its crimes against humanity. The IUSY urged the United Nations to pressure Azerbaijan to release Armenian hostages.
Former finance minister
During the 2008 crisis, Scholz served as Germany's labor minister. He was a strong advocate for policies to protect German workers. This included the government's controversial "Agenda 2010" labor market reform. He also helped broker the global corporate minimum tax agreement.
In January, Scholz ranked fifth in the list of most popular government heads in Germany. His cabinet has a distinctly northern German note, with a chief of staff from Schleswig Holstein. He must also manage a coalition of three different parties. Among them are the pro-business Free Democrats and the environmentalist Greens.
Scholz was a seasoned politician, with experience as a labour lawyer and labor minister. He was born in the western German city of Osnabruck, and his parents worked in the textile industry. He studied law at the University of Hamburg and became a member of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the 1970s. He has been a member of the Bundestag since 1998, serving in the first Merkel government as the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs.
In 2011 he became the mayor of the city of Hamburg. He took office when the CDU had control of the city government for the second time in eight years. His tenure was not without its setbacks, though. He was unable to reverse a declining economy, which was exacerbated by a pandemic.
In a campaign that has made the former finance minister of chancellor Scholz a household name, he was able to take the lead in an effort to revive the city's port district, HafenCity. His efforts led to the construction of the Elbphilharmonie concert hall. He also increased spending on daycare services and abolished university tuition fees.
Relationship with Russia
Despite his strong, public support for Ukraine and the European Union, Chancellor Scholz's relationship with Russia has been criticized. Scholz has been accused of being too soft on Moscow and not delivering the necessary weapons to Ukraine. The German government has also been questioned for its lack of strategy when it comes to confronting Russian aggression.
During his campaign, Scholz promised to dramatically increase Germany's defence budget. But the German armed forces have been underfunded, and the country has not been sending enough weapons to Ukraine when the country needs them.
Scholz also failed to deliver a solid plan for strengthening the EU. A foreign policy expert said that Europe should focus more on long-term relations with Russia.
As part of its national security strategy, the German foreign ministry is working on how to better articulate its strategic goals. That includes developing a framework for dealing with Russia.
In a speech to parliament, Scholz called the Russian invasion of Ukraine a "turning point" for Europe. He called the conflict between the two countries a war, but noted that it was not outlawed in Europe. He also referred to the Kosovo massacre as a "immoral crime." He called Putin's authoritarian crackdown on his citizens in Russia "unacceptable."
Scholz is also being pushed on the pipeline to Germany, known as the Nord Stream 2, which would allow the German government to continue buying Russian gas. It is unclear how this pipeline will be handled in a new government.
The Social Democratic Party has traditionally championed close ties with Russia. But Scholz has been reluctant to take a strong leadership role in response to the conflict.
Germany's response to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
During the late 2021 to early 2022 period, there were signs of Russian aggression in Ukraine. President Vladimir Putin ordered troops into eastern Ukraine. Russia also recognized the independence of breakaway areas. In the ensuing weeks, the conflict escalated dramatically.
Germany has been an important player in NATO and the EU. In addition, it has played a key role in deterring Russian aggression. The German government has enacted several sanctions against Moscow, including a ban on trading Russian state bonds.
Germany has also delivered anti-tank weapons to Ukraine. However, the German government has not provided the requisite number of heavy weapons to the Ukrainians. The ambiguous track record on arms deliveries heightens the importance of Germany's elite policies.
In the EU, the European Union (EU) and its member states have agreed to impose further sanctions on Russia. The newest one is the prohibition on trading Russian state bonds. The EU foreign ministers also agreed to increase the size of their existing sanctions against Russia.
In addition, the German government halted the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline. But this measure came only days before the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
While the halt was a good move, the actual contribution to deterring Russian aggression was small. In the end, the German government could only provide the flimsiest of deterrence contributions.
There are many other European states that have been contributing to the deterrent-enhancing task. Some of these include the Czech Republic, which has donated more armaments to Ukraine than Germany.
While the German government has taken a number of steps to support the Ukrainian cause, its response to the invasion has been muted.
Canada-Germany cooperation on the development of a clean economy
During a visit to Toronto and Ontario last week, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau discussed energy security, a clean-energy transition and the promotion of trade that benefits all. Both leaders promoted greater cooperation between their two countries. They also addressed business leaders at a Canada-Germany Business Forum.
The signing of a joint declaration of intent to establish the Canada-Germany Hydrogen Alliance is the next step in a joint effort to develop a transatlantic hydrogen supply corridor. The declaration commits both countries to working together to export clean Canadian hydrogen to Germany.
The Hydrogen Declaration calls for a policy environment that supports clean, renewable hydrogen production and deployment. It also calls for increased collaboration between the private sector and sub-national governments to identify and capitalize on opportunities in the market. It also outlines the governments' commitment to a hydrogen value chain in both countries.
The Hydrogen Declaration will serve as a signal to the private sector that both nations are serious about working together to accelerate a shift towards clean energy. The two countries will work together on study trips and bilateral conferences to facilitate energy and energy-related collaboration. They will also engage in joint industry organizations and communications initiatives.
The Alliance's steering group is chaired by State Secretary Patrick Graichen (BMWK), Deputy Minister John Hannaford (NRCan) and Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson. It also includes representatives from the Federation of German Industries, the Association of German Banks, and the German Automakers.
A memorandum of understanding was signed on March 16, 2021, establishing an energy partnership between the two countries. It focuses on energy regulations, research, and energy efficiency, and aligns the energy policies of both nations.