According to their association VDMA, the German mechanical engineering companies will leave the corona crisis well behind them in the coming year. For 2022, chief economist Ralph Wiechers expects a production increase of 5 percent adjusted for the price increases, as the association announced on Thursday in Frankfurt.
In the current year, according to the forecast that has been confirmed again, companies will even produce around 10 percent more than in the crisis year 2020, but will not yet be able to fully compensate for the previous slump of 11.8 percent.
Delivery bottlenecks restrict production
According to its own assessment, the export-oriented industry could grow even faster with its well-filled order books, but is now struggling across the board with material and delivery bottlenecks. In the latest VDMA survey from the beginning of September, 81 percent of the around 600 participating companies reported noticeable or even serious impairments in their supply chains. Electrotechnical and electronic components in particular are in short supply.
According to the survey, more than 70 percent of the companies therefore want to change their procurement and distribution. Means for this include the search for additional suppliers, larger warehousing and alternative delivery routes. However, the problem can be better dealt with through the international division of labor than through the retrieval of certain pre-production stages, said VDMA President Karl Haeusgen. 61 percent of the companies named the shortage of skilled workers as another serious problem when ramping up production.
In terms of nominal sales, the industry is likely to fall short of the pre-crisis figure of 229 billion euros in 2019 with 226 billion euros in the current year, is the further forecast. In the year 2022, in which many missed orders would also be processed, the record value of 239 billion euros could then be reached.