VDMA - turnaround and increase in orders
The Corona pandemic hit the German plastics and rubber machinery industry hard at the beginning of the year. However, according to the VDMA - Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau e.V., Plastics and Rubber Machinery Association, the downward trend in sales and order intake flattened out as early as mid-2020. Since September 2020, order intake has even risen again.
The cumulative order intake from January to October 2020 is thus only three percent below the order intake in the same period in 2019.
Reifenhäuser explains, "The months of September and October played a significant role in this." He adds, "In September 2020, we had 13 percent more incoming orders than in the same month of the previous year, and in October 2020, there were even twice as many orders in the books as a year ago."
"This means that the German plastics and rubber machinery industry is about to turn the corner," discusses Thorsten Kühmann, managing director of the VDMA trade association. "It gives us confidence to see that companies have adapted better and better to the challenges as the pandemic has progressed. Business is up and running again," Kühmann continues.
The development in foreign trade backs up this statement. Until May 2020, monthly exports of plastics and rubber machinery from Germany were always significantly lower than in the corresponding month of the previous year. From June onwards, exports rose again, and from September onwards they were higher than in the same month of the previous year for the first time.
This positive trend means that the trade association and machinery manufacturers can once again look ahead with greater optimism. However, the development of sales this year is still lagging well behind. Accordingly, the plastics and rubber machinery sector will still end up with a minus of between ten and 15 percent this year.
Next year, however, the trade association expects sales to increase by five percent. The forecast for 2022 is even ten percent plus.
"This means that the German plastics and rubber machinery industry will very likely return to the pre-crisis level of 2019 in 2023," Kühmann emphasizes confidently.