Shortage of skilled manufacturing workers worsens in Germany

Shortage of skilled manufacturing workers worsens in Germany

The shortage of skilled manufacturing workers of machinery and equipment is worsening in Germany, according to a new report.

The study by the Ifo Institute based at the University of Munich stated the shortage of skilled workers went beyond trained mechatronics engineers, mechanics, and IT specialists; a shortage of low-skilled employees is emerging as well, according to 9.4% of companies surveyed in the industry, up from 8.3% in April.

The industry is even more constrained by shortages of key intermediate products: 90.7% of companies said as much, up fractionally from the 90.6% reported in June.

The Ifo Institute’s Nicolas Bunde said: “Material shortages have been the main problem for manufacturers of machinery and equipment since mid-2021.”

The industry’s business outlook remains bleak. In July, expectations rose only slightly to minus 22.7 points, up from minus 23.2 points in June.

Germany is the largest economy in the European Union, but it is facing a squeeze on a number of fronts. Last week it was warned its losses could be a factor of six times larger than it experienced as a result of Brexit if the EU was to continue down a path of decoupling from China in a trade war.

The comments came after an Ifo Institute study was commissioned by the Bavarian Industry Association. Co-author Lisandra Flack warned that: “De-globalisation makes us poorer. Rather than turning away from important trading partners without good reason, companies should additionally source inputs from other countries in order to reduce one-sided and critical dependencies on certain markets and authoritarian regimes.”

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