The many election gains made by the
Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) party in Germany will also have a negative
impact on Frankfurt’s chances.
However, in nationwide polls, the AfD currently
accounts for less than 15% and, unlike similar parties in the Netherlands and
France, it is far removed from assuming political responsibility. In addition, the
AfD received less than 10% of the vote in Frankfurt’s local elections in 2016.
Therefore, the political uncertainties of its competitors give Frankfurt a
competitive edge. On the other hand, Germany’s restrictive employment
protection laws could be a major competitive disadvantage. In this connection,
one can be sceptical as to whether the proposal made by Hesse’s finance
minister to ease employment protection restrictions for top earners with annual
salaries of over EUR 300,000 will be implemented.
In any event, this initiative
highlights how active politicians have become in plugging Frankfurt in the hope
of strengthening it as a financial hub.