There is no need to convince anyone that the effects of the pandemic have hit the moto industry particularly hard, especially since the newly published reports show how the wave of the crisis is spreading over new branches of the automotive industry. Unfortunately, this also enters our economy, where the automotive industry generates approx. 8 percent. Gross Domestic Product and employs 330 thousand. employees.
Effects of the pandemic
Not only was the export-oriented automotive production in Poland faced with a collapse in demand from its key trading partners in Europe. To show the scale of the problem, it is enough to mention that in 2020 13.8 million cars were produced in the EU, which is almost a quarter less than the year before. Polish factories also stopped significantly – only a little over 450,000 left the production line. vehicles, i.e. by over 30 percent. less than in 2019. According to ACEA estimates, throughout 2020, factories in Poland lost their production of over 192 thousand due to the pandemic. vehicles.
Last year, Polish companies producing mainly for export found themselves in a difficult situation – exports in the automotive industry shrank by over 15 percent. This translated into a reduction in employment by 10 thousand. people compared to the previous year. Even then, companies also reduced investments by 18 percent. on a year-to-year basis.
In 2021, more and more companies give up investment
In 2021, however, the collapse deepens. According to the Exact Systems report “MotoBarometer 2021. Mood in automotive in Poland and Europe” as much as 58 percent. automotive industry companies have suspended planned investments – 38 percent gave up part of the investment, 18 percent moved their plans for the future, and only 2 percent. she let them go completely.
Of the 11 European countries surveyed, Poland came third with the highest percentage of companies withdrawing from development plans. Only Germany (63%) and Romania (62%) are behind us. The same percentage as Poland was recorded by the Spanish automotive industry. The COVID-19 pandemic affected Belgium (34%) and Slovakia (37%) the least in the area of investments.
There is, however, a light at the end of the tunnel. At the same time, the participants of the study stated that they did not withdraw from the investment definitively. As many as 2 out of 3 surveyed entrepreneurs (68%) said that they were planning investments in the next 3 years. Only one in nine responded negatively (11 percent), and one in five was unable to define their plans (21 percent). And here Polish entrepreneurs stand out from other countries with the greatest optimism. A similar percentage of companies replied to planned investments also in Turkey and Hungary, where the aforementioned percentage was respectively – 66 and 65 percent. In turn, we can deal with the lowest number of investments in the coming years in Portugal (33%).
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What investments is the automotive industry planning?
Entrepreneurs (regardless of the country) agreed that the number one investment goal is to increase production capacity. In Poland, this was the answer of two out of three respondents (68%), and in the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Spain and Turkey as many as 8 out of 10. Investments in new production plants were next. As much as 22 percent. Polish entrepreneurs participating in the survey have such plans. With this result, we are in the forefront of the surveyed countries – along with Spain (25% of responses) and Hungary (23%). In the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Turkey, every fifth respondent (19% of responses) thinks about the new plant, and in Germany every seventh (14%). Only in Portugal, no one has such an investment goal.
In Poland, however, 8 percent. of respondents indicated a new research and development center, and 6 percent. planning to acquire another company.
What investments are companies planning within 3 years?
Will Polish automotive companies be saved by “eco-revolution”?
According to the co-organizers of the study, i.e. both the president of the management board of Exact Systems and the Polish Development Fund, such a large percentage of those willing to invest results from the qualitative change in the Polish automotive industry and its active participation in the revolution taking place before our eyes. In recent years, Poland has become an important player on the electromobility market. Suffice it to mention that we have been a net exporter of batteries since 2012, and since then new plants have been established, thanks to which we have become the fourth global producer after China, Korea and Germany.
The study “MotoBarometer 2021. Moods in automotive in Poland and Europe” was carried out by Exact Systems on a deliberate sample of representatives of companies from the automotive sector. Among them there are, among others car manufacturers, sub-suppliers of automotive parts and components. The sample size was 776 respondents from 11 countries (Poland, Belgium, Czech Republic, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Turkey, Hungary).
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