Even though key economic data are showing a decline at present, the Association of German Machine Tool Manufacturers (VDW) is reporting "normalisation at a high level". A high order backlog is actually leading to another increase in production in the current year.
In order to ensure continuing success for the machine tool industry, a large number of innovations aimed primarily at higher productivity will be presented by exhibitors at AMB, International Exhibition for Metal Working, which will be held at the Stuttgart Trade Fair Centre next door to Stuttgart Airport from 18 to 22 September 2012.
"In the first six months of this year, the number of orders received by the machine tool industry fell by 13 per cent. This was expected due to the high volume in 2011 and indicates a normalisation of order activity", said Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Managing Director of the VDW. However, production will actually rise again this year on account of the current high order backlog. "We predict an increase of 6 per cent." The order backlog has "largely remained stable". In June it stood at 8.4 months, i.e. only slightly below the figure of 8.7 months in February. The recent dip in the figures for the global economy and the growing uncertainty among investors led to lower forecasts for economic growth in important customer regions. However, economic forecasters again anticipated a rise in gross domestic product and investments in 2013. The turbulences around the Euro have primarily led to a drop in foreign orders, i.e. three times higher than domestic orders. Orders from Asia showed the weakest growth in the first quarter while Europe remained comparatively stable with minus 2 per cent. "Orders from America, especially North and Central America, were very good", stated Dr. Schäfer.