The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. With nearly 300 released each year, working papers cover a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
In 2005, the German government announced a far-reaching fiscal adjustment program. This paper uses the IMF's Global Fiscal Model to study its impact and explores options for addressing long-term pressures from population aging. The growth effects of the planned VAT increase are likely modest, largely owing to the stimulating effect of other tax reductions. The reform will improve the long-term debt path but achieving fiscal sustainability requires further adjustment over the medium term. An additional package of expenditure restraint, entitlement reform, and tax-base broadening compares favorably to other adjustment options. Spillover effects to trading partners of these policies are modest.