While production in the first half of 2020 decreased by an unweighted average of around 32% compared with the same period last year, the average drop in orders across Europe is 39%. Capacity utilisation is therefore currently at a relatively low level of 67%.
While new orders from the engineering sector have generally fallen markedly, those from the automotive sector have slumped strongly.
92% of those surveyed stated that short-time work is being used to adjust capacity. On average, a solid half of the workforce is in short-time work. The figures vary between 30% and 76% in the individual countries.
For 2020, the associations generally expect a decline in production of around 25%. The figures vary between 10% and 40%.
Accordingly, around 60% expect the crisis to last for more than 12 months. Unfortunately, job cuts will therefore become a pressing issue in the coming months. It is feared that on average around a quarter of jobs are acutely threatened.
The third CAEF survey clearly shows that the foundry industry will need some time to catch up. In the coming weeks and months, the most important factor will be getting the pandemic back under control. The rising numbers in large parts of Europe are particularly worrying. Wide-scale lockdowns and a renewed collapse in consumer demand would have a long-term negative impact on the investment propensity of many of the industries that use castings, and the situation of foundries and their employees would deteriorate increasingly.
Tillman van de Sand
phone: +49 211 68 71 — 301