Foundry Corporate News

German Foundry Sector continues to grow

The German foundry industry continues to grow posting sustainable growth especially

<font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="1">from left: Dr. Ing.&nbsp;Gotthard Wolf, Hauptgeschäftsführer VDG<br>Dipl.-Wirtsch. Ing. Hans- Dieter Honsel, Präsident VDG<br>Friedrich- Georg Kehrer, Projektleiter GIFA/METEC/THERMPROCESS/NEWCAST<br>Andreas Hecker, Geschäftsführer Georg Fischer GmbH &amp; Co. KG, Mettmann<br>Joachim Schäfer, Geschäftsführer Messe Düsseldorf GmbH</font><font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="1">from left: Friedrich- Georg Kehrer, Joachim Schäfer, </font>
<font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="1">Dipl.-Wirtsch. Ing. Hans- Dieter Honsel, <br>Dr. Ing.&nbsp;Gotthard Wolf, Andreas Hecker</font>

  German Foundry Sector continues to grow

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">The German foundry industry continues to grow posting sustainable growth especially in important target markets like the automotive industry and mechnical engineering. “We are one of the leading international casting nations,” said Hans-Dieter Honsel, President of the Düsseldorf-based German Foundrymen Association (Verein Deutscher Gießerei­fachleute e.V. - VDG), speaking at a press conference in the run-up to the foundry trade fairs GIFA and NEWCAST&nbsp; held next year.</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">According to Honsel outstanding cast products that span the entire range of metals, state-of-the-art production methods, first-class product development as well as the ability to innovate design are the strengths that characterise the German foundry industry. Companies in the German foundry industry supply essential parts and components for more complex goods such as cars, machines and systems. Commenting on this Honsel said: “Not a lot can be achieved without our cast parts but most things can be achieved with the help of foundry exeperts.”</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">GIFA: No 1 in the foundry sector&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Presenting GIFA and NEWCAST – in global focus again from 12 to 16 June 2007 – Project Director at Messe Düsseldorf Friedrich-Georg Kehrer dubbed the two trade fairs the international platform for the foundry sector. GIFA – the International Foundry Trade Fair with WFO Technical Forum – has established itself in Düsseldorf as the world’s No. 1 fair in the foundry business. GIFA reflects the market and provides an overview of all innovations in the world of foundries. The spectrum at GIFA ranges from foundry plants, refractories technology, foundry chemistry, mould and core making, gating and feeding, finishing, handling and storage technology through to pattern and die making and control systems.</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">In June 2003 NEWCAST – International Castings Trade Fair – celebrated its debut and was immediately welcomed by exhibitors and trade visitors alike. As the logical extension to GIFA, NEWCAST now represents the end of the value-added chain featuring the most varied cast products: from precise medical device components through to ships’ engines weighing countless tonnes. &nbsp;<br>In parallel with the two foundry and cast-product trade fairs GIFA and NEWCAST, the two trade fairs METEC and THERMPROCESS will also be held in June 2007.&nbsp; Together the four trade fairs form the portal for a unique value-added chain for technology and business. &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Automobile Industry and Mechanical Engineering boost growth</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Currently, the German foundry industry employs about 80,000 staff and produced a sales volume in the vicinity of eleven billion Euros last year. In the previous year, production records were achieved by iron, steel and tempering foundries as well as non-ferrous metal foundries. In the areas of iron and steel casting, sales in 2005 increased to 4.2 million tonnes, and in the area of non-ferrous metal casting to 900,000 tonnes. For 2006, the industry is very optimistic that it will at least maintain the high, record-setting level of the previous year across all casting processes. The results of the first half of 2006 confirm this confidence. In the areas of production, sales volume and order volume, the statistics support this trend. The automotive and mechanical engineering sectors, and at long last the construction industry again, are the major driving forces behind these excellent developments at foundries.&nbsp;</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">According to Hans-Dieter Honsel, the foundry industry is also set to continue its expansionary course in the medium and long term adding that the automotive industry and machine construction would continue to be the strongest drivers for growth. A study by the Deutsche Bank anticipates German foundries will increase their output by an annual average of 2 % and by annually 3 % in terms of value by 2010.&nbsp;</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Honsel explained that the trend towards lightweight construction in the transport sector favoured the use of innovative, complex cast structures. Germany’s high&nbsp; labour costs compared to European competitors could only be compensated for by the greater productivity and the higher quality of domestic cast products in </font><font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">part. This was helped by the high ability to innovate, the reliability and the extensive services rendered by the industry in addition to highest product quality, last but not least attributable to the highly skilled workforce.&nbsp;</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Extension of value-added chain</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Hans-Dieter Honsel particularly stressed that the industry had undergone constant change over the past years. He said companies in the foundry industry had become firmly established as competent development partners, especially for the automotive industry and mechancial engineering. Foundries managed to increase their share in the value chain thereby strengthening their position in the face of international competition. This, he said, had contributed to a substantial cut in the development and leadtimes for new products over the past few years. While technological input was higher, it also guaranteed foundry companies as long-term development partners, who could no longer be replaced at will since they sought out the optimal technical and economic solutions together with their customers.</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">This, he added, also applied to the downstream finishing of cast parts. A sizeable proportion of foundries succeeeded in systematically extending their added-value chain over the past years by making material investments in the machining of cast parts.</font>

<font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2">Like many other technology-oriented sectors the foundy industry also suffered from a lack of skilled technical staff on all levels – both in terms of skilled labour and in terms of engineers. The VDG therefore initiated numerous measures to recruit fresh talent. According to Honsel the aim here was to show clearly that “our foundries are far from being hot, dirty workplaces and have grown into largely mechanised, bright factories using state-of-the-art production systems in an anything but unpleasant environment.” Apart from improving the education and further training opportunities in foundry companies, the VDG also advocated an intensification and optimisation of academic training with new Bachelor’s and Master’s courses.<br><br>In terms of economic policy Hans-Dieter Honsel called for raw materials, energy and tax policies to be tailored more specifically to the needs of the industry. “The economic framework in Germany must create a level playing field for competition with and on global markets,” Honsel said stressing the particular importance of energy policy. The competition-distorting, exorbitantly high German electricity prices were a cost factor hard to absorb for German foundries, thereby endangering their existence and, hence, important industrial jobs in Germany. Apart from electricity suppliers’ price dictates policy makers were also to be blamed for the high power prices. Honsel concluded with a demand that “Those speaking out in favour of retaining and creating jobs in Germany must also take this into consideration in economic policy in general, and in energy policy, in particular. Less red tape and internationally competitive taxation and company registration legislation would also be extremely helpful.”<br></font><font face="Arial, Helvetica, Geneva, Swiss, SunSans-Regular" size="2"><br><strong>For further information:</strong><br>VDG Verein Deutscher Giessereifachleute<br>General Manager Dr.-Ing. Gotthard Wolf<br>Sohnstr. 70<br>D-40237 Düsseldorf<br><a href="" target="_blank" class="external-link-new-window"><img src="" alt><br></a><a href="javascript:linkTo_UnCryptMailto('ocknvq,yqnhBxfi0fg');" title="Öffnet ein Fenster zum Versenden einer E-Mail" class="mail"><img alt="Öffnet ein Fenster zum Versenden einer E-Mail" src="">wolf(at)</a><br>Tel.: +49(0)211/6871-331<br>Fax: +49(0)211/6871-109</font>

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