Publications Briefings de l'Ifri
Speech by Olaf Scholz in the Bundestag, Berlin, 2019

A “New Era”? Toward a Realignment of German Foreign Policy after the Russian Invasion of Ukraine Briefings de l'Ifri, March 7, 2022

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s speech to the Bundestag on February 27, 2022, announced a new orientation in foreign policy and challenged the principles that had been the consensus in Germany for the past thirty years.

  • Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s speech in the Bundestag marks the beginning of a “new era” in German foreign, security and energy policy.
  • The foreign policy incorporates the logic of military deterrence by promising to invest 100 billion euros and to reach the target of 2 per cent of gross domestic product defined within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) for defense spending.
  • The Russian-Ukrainian war has shown Germany’s energy dependence on Russia, making it likely that Germany’s desired energy transition policy will be modified.
  • This turning point for German foreign policy integrates diplomacy and makes Europe the preferred framework for action in order to strengthen the “European sovereignty”.


Paul Maurice is a Research Fellow at the Study Committee on Franco-German Relations (Cerfa) at the French Institute of International Relations - Ifri, where he specifically works on issues of foreign and security policy of Germany and Franco-German relations in the context of European integration.


This publication is available in French: "Un « changement d’époque » ? Vers une réorientation de la politique étrangère allemande après l’invasion russe en Ukraine" (pdf)


Bundeswehr European Arms Export German foreign policy German security policy North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Olaf Scholz Germany Russia Ukraine