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Merkel's `We'll Make It' on Refugees Backed by German Economists

  • Advisory group sees budget surplus even with extra spending
  • Merkel government struggles to restrict asylum seekers

German economists backed Chancellor Angela Merkel in saying Europe’s biggest economy is strong enough to handle a record influx of refugees, even as her government reinstated European Union rules that may lead to more deportations.

Germany will have to increase public spending on direct aid to refugees by as much as 22.6 billion euros ($24 billion) for this year and next, though it will still run a budget surplus both years, Merkel’s council of economic advisers said in a report Wednesday. Refugees who stay in Germany will probably make a “moderate” contribution to the economy in the medium term, according to the panel of five economists.