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IK: Weak demand for plastic packaging

The mood among manufacturers in Germany is suffering due to weak demand, persistently high energy costs and a shortage of skilled workers.


According to a recent survey conducted by IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen e.V. among around 300 members, more than half of the companies assess the current economic situation as poor and do not expect any improvement in the coming months. According to the IK, the companies cited weak demand for plastic packaging and films as the main reason for the mood of crisis. According to the data, more than 50 percent of packaging manufacturers rate the current demand for their products as poor or very poor. High energy prices and a shortage of skilled workers are also causing problems for companies, according to the survey. Production cutbacks, plant closures and short-time working were the result, it says. Nearly one in five companies in the current survey said they had cut production to a considerable extent. A further 38 percent of companies responded by cutting production to a medium extent and introducing short-time working. Just under one-fifth of the companies surveyed are producing without any restrictions. There were no signs of a reversal of the trend in the coming months. For example, more than one in three companies currently anticipated a reduction in the workforce in the industry. "The difficult framework conditions for industrial production in Germany are also affecting the plastics packaging sector," explains IK CEO Martin Engelmann. "As many as eleven percent of the companies surveyed are specifically thinking about relocating abroad, and five percent are already in the process of relocating parts of their production or the entire company. Deindustrialization is taking place before our eyes and it is happening faster than many would have thought," warns Engelmann and calls on politicians to stop this trend. Cause for hope, he says, is that just under one in two plastic packaging manufacturers is planning to invest in Germany.


  • (June 23, 2023)
  • Photo: © IK, (Dr. Martin Engelmann)

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