Habeck said growth would turn out close to zero for the last months of 2022 and the first part of this year and could be slightly negative.
“It is still likely that we will have a technical recession," defined as two consecutive quarters of falling output, but the downturn would be “shorter and milder” than earlier expected, he said.
Germany has introduced price caps on electricity and natural gas as part of 200 billion euros in added government spending, enabling people to buy 80% of their heat or electricity at fixed prices.
With prospects for Europe's largest economy looking less gloomy, more economists are now saying the 20 countries that use the euro currency may avoid a shallow technical recession.
But high inflation is a significant drag on growth as higher prices for food and utilities erode consumer spending power.