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Continued good prospects for Air Handling Technology
Sales increase of 3 percent expected for 2019
Industry with high significance for the world machine trade
Environmental protection, climate protection and occupational safety as business drivers
As a cross-sectional technology used in a large number of customer industries, air handling technology once again recorded a 1 percent increase in incoming orders in the first quarter of 2019. This positive development was presented by the VDMA Air Handling Technology Association at this year's general meeting in Frankfurt am Main.
A large number of companies also expect a positive result for the rest of the year, as the VDMA flash survey conducted by the Air Handling Technology Association shows. As a whole, the industry is currently forecasting a 3 percent increase in sales for 2019. However, business is developing unevenly. The proportion of companies expecting sales to decline in 2019 rised significantly. In the autumn survey 2018, 90 percent of the companies surveyed still expected growth this year, whereas in the spring 2019 only 75 percent of the companies involved still did.
Regardless of this, the expected turnover is above the expectations of the flash survey of autumn 2018, where companies had still assumed a plus of 2 percent.
One reason for the increased expectations is the postponement of sales, says Guntram Preuß, consultant for market information. Not all planned orders could be executed in 2018, so that corresponding sales are to be booked in 2019. Reasons for these shifts could be bottlenecks in the material flow as well as personnel shortages. However, delays in the course of the project, partly due to lengthy approval processes for construction projects, can also be cited as the cause.
Important drivers for development in ventilation technology are energy and resource efficiency, environmental, climate and occupational safety as well as digitization. "As digitalization progresses, so does the demand for products from our industry. A growing number of data centers and server rooms must be cooled with high reliability and a comprehensive service offered," explains Dr. Thomas Schräder, Managing Director of the Air Handling Technology Association. "This is a continuously growing market, especially for providers of high-quality system solutions.
The importance of the industry is clearly demonstrated by the share of air handling technology in the total world trade in machinery. With worldwide exports of more than 100 billion euros, air technology products account for almost 10 percent of global mechanical engineering trade of 1,050 billion euros (2017).
BarCamp "Work 4.0" with active participation
Particular focus of the General Assembly was on the question of how the work of the future will be organised. How do you integrate people into the world of "Work 4.0" and what are important prerequisites for the new digital world of work? What changes will digitisation bring to employers and what changes will it bring to employees?
The participants addressed these questions in a BarCamp and discussed leadership, digital transformation in the world of work and future competencies. "For our member companies, the future of our working world has high priority. Society is in a state of constant change. Fundamental changes are occurring in ever shorter sections," explained Dr. Schräder. "Artificial intelligence, of course, has an impact on the way we work."
Europe's socio-political and economic challenges
The lecture "Europe's socio-political and economic challenges" by Dr. Christoph von Marschall, diplomatic correspondent of the editor-in-chief of the Berliner Tagesspiegel, historian, author and award-winning journalist, was repeatedly taken up in the individual BarCamp sessions. Von Marschall highlighted Germany's tasks in Europe and at the international level, the associated challenges in foreign and economic policy and the complex relationship with global partners.
Dr. Hugo Blaum, GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft and chairman of the Air Handling Technology Association, summed up the event as follows: "We should learn to see the world with European eyes and not only to keep pace with the development of digitization, but to help shape it wherever possible.
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