Following two years of negotiations with the German government, the nation's capital can look forward to receiving more financial support for its special role as a center of political and cultural activities.
The German government and the city state of Berlin on Monday signed a new long-term contract on the financial support the nation's capital will be receiving out of federal coffers.
According to the agreement, Berlin is to get some 2 billion euros ($2.19 billion) from German taxpayers from 2018 to 2027 - that's 500 million euros more than granted under the old contract.
Berlin will be entitled to 1.1 billion euros for "security-related spending" that among other things is required during official visits of foreign leaders or big sporting events. German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble said the financial support to boost security marked an 85-percent increase compared with what was earmarked under the terms of the previous agreement.
'Capital of all Germans'
The German capital can also look forward to more federal resources for its manifold cultural activities. The Berlin Philharmonic orchestra for instance will receive 7.5 million euros annually, while a municipal opera foundation is to get 10 million euros per year as of 2018.
The city state and the German government also agreed on speeding up the handover of some crucial real estate areas to the Berlin authorities which the city urgently needs in order to build housing for low-income residents.
Schäuble said the more generous financial support detailed in the new contract was justified as Berlin was "the capital of all Germans."
Berlin Mayor Michael Müller called the newly inked contract "a big success," saying it would help the city grow and prosper.
hg/tr (AFP, dpa)