Orders decrease by almost a third

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The effects of the corona pandemic have hit the German machine and plant construction industry with force in April.

"As expected, Corona has left deep marks on the order books of the mechanical engineering industry. In April, incoming orders fell 31 percent short of the previous year's level in real terms. This is the sharpest decline since the financial crisis of 2008/2009," said VDMA Chief Economist Dr. Ralph Wiechers. Domestic orders fell by 25 percent. Foreign orders fell even stronger (minus 34 per cent), with the decline from the euro countries (minus 33 per cent) and non-euro countries (minus 34 per cent) being almost equal. "The sharp decline is in line with the results of the VDMA Corona Flash Survey conducted in mid-April, in which 77 percent of those surveyed complained about noticeable or even serious disruptions on the demand side," explained Wiechers. This makes it all the more important for the government to take decisive action now to give companies enough air to survive the period until a sustained economic recovery.

"The sharp decline is in line with the results of the VDMA Corona Flash Survey of mid-April, in which 77 percent of those surveyed complained about noticeable or even serious disruptions on the demand side.

In the less volatile three-month period from February to April 2020, incoming orders fell by 14 percent in real terms compared with the previous year. Domestic orders were down 10 percent and foreign orders were 16 percent down on the previous year. Orders from the euro countries shrank by 15 percent, while orders from non-euro countries were down 17 percent.