From the perspective of Saxony-Anhalt’s Prime Minister Reiner Haseloff, the economic situation is a main concern for many people in the East. “Surveys speak a clear language. People are asking themselves: Is my livelihood really secure or could the ground be pulled out from under me again?” said the CDU politician to the German Press Agency, referring to the biographies of many people the end of the GDR.

“Some have had to start over five times and have experienced layoffs and bankruptcies. Because there is uncertainty about these issues again today, radical parties are currently so popular,” says Haseloff. “People are just very worried, they’ve already gone through these holes. It’s having an impact.”

According to over 84 percent of medium-sized companies, the economic situation in Germany has worsened or even worsened significantly in the past twelve months. In a recently published survey by the Federal Association of Small and Medium-sized Businesses, around 43 percent of the medium-sized companies surveyed also stated that the situation of their own company had worsened. Around 40 percent also expect this for 2024.

Haseloff sees a need for politicians to ensure cheaper energy prices and progress in integration. “The AfD doesn’t have the better people, they simply attract the entire mood. We still have it in our hands in the next few months to make it clear that we offer solutions. Clarity is needed when it comes to the economic situation and migration .”

Haseloff has been head of government since 2011 and is now the longest-serving incumbent prime minister in Germany.