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Sectors and Resources

The Sector Research team analyses cyclical and structural developments. On the basis of its findings it draws up business and policy recommendations for the major sectors. These include the important branches of industry as well as wholesale/retail, services, energy, transportation and environmental policy

179 (141-150)
May 26, 2014
Region:
Analyst:
The differences between the German automotive industry and the automotive industry in Germany will continue to expand in the coming years – the construction of production capacities in the growth markets is progressing. Expansion abroad does not have to be to the detriment of Germany as an automaking location. However, a stable or even positive development of Germany as an automotive manufacturing location cannot be taken for granted. We outline three potential scenarios for the development of Germany as an automaking location until 2025. In our most likely scenario domestic car output remains at around its current level until then. At the same time Germany benefits from a gradual recovery in western European car demand. In addition, smaller export markets become more important. [more]
141
May 23, 2014
Region:
From the standpoint of potential company founders, an inadequate supply of funding is a key issue especially in a start-up's early phases. Therefore, we welcome the efforts of the crowdfunding movement from an economic perspective, particularly with regard to growth. However, there is an urgent need for action aimed at eliminating the existing information asymmetries and conflicts of interest between company founders, funding platforms and investors. [more]
142
May 16, 2014
So far the West has chosen a reluctant approach in its attempt to contain Russia’s encroachment in Ukraine, refraining from economically or financially meaningful sanctions. The Ukraine crisis and further sanctions will not be inconsequential for the profile of the European recovery, but when looking at the distribution of costs, it seems that the West can afford to be tough towards Moscow. Obviously, the economic cost would be higher if Russian supply of energy to the West was jeopardized, but this would come at a very high price for Russia itself. [more]
143
May 5, 2014
Region:
Big data is increasingly becoming a factor in production, market competitiveness and, therefore, growth. Cutting-edge analysis technologies are making inroads into all areas of people’s lives and changing their day-to-day existence. Sensors, biometric identification and the general trends towards a convergence of information and communications technologies are driving the big data movement. Data has a commercial value – therefore the risks should not be underestimated. It is now a question of putting in place the necessary regulatory framework to allow these state-of-the-art methods and the technology that underpins them to properly flourish. [more]
144
April 23, 2014
Region:
Analyst:
Industry 4.0 will upgrade Germany as an industrial location by bringing on the fourth industrial revolution. With trade flows becoming increasingly internationally interlinked, the aspects associated with Industry 4.0 of automation, more flexible processes as well as horizontal and vertical integration will become more and more important features of a modern, competitive production structure. Especially for Germany with its particularly favourable basic conditions, Industry 4.0 provides the long-term major opportunity to consolidate the country's leading position in the competitive global marketplace – also relative to the fast-growing emerging markets. [more]
145
April 14, 2014
What about agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa? Is it important to develop the sector or should efforts focus elsewhere? We argue that investments in agriculture and agribusiness are needed and that, ensuring efficient and sustainable agricultural production, they can drive economic growth and poverty reduction as well as fulfil both domestic and global demand for agricultural products. SSA offers both huge agricultural potential and fast-growing markets and there is increasing investor interest along the whole food supply chain. Challenges remain in terms of infrastructure, trade, skills and financing but there is increased commitment from governments and other partners for a sector with strong growth opportunities. [more]
146
February 18, 2014
Substantial changes in global economic weights over the past decades, in particular the rise of China and India, combined with major shifts on the energy supply side – the US shale revolution – have increasingly shifted the Gulf countries’ economic focus towards the Asian continent. Asia is now the GCC’s most important trade partner, both in terms of its hydrocarbon exports as well as imports of machinery, manufactured goods and food. The growing trade ties have also been accompanied by intensified bilateral investment relations. The observed shift promises to give the GCC countries better access to rapidly growing Asian retail markets, not only in energy but also other sectors such as telecommunications and Islamic finance. This should help the GCC in its ambition to diversify its economies. Migrant workers from Asia contribute significantly to economic prosperity and development in the Gulf monarchies, although the socio-economic implications stemming from the rapidly growing expatriate communities in the region will pose some challenges. [more]
147
January 23, 2014
Region:
Germany pursues ambitious energy and climate policy objectives and is thus a trailblazer in these fields internationally. However, the faltering UN climate protection process shows that other countries are not following Germany's lead or are moving at a slower pace. In Germany, a barely perceptible process of de-industrialisation has already begun in energy-intensive sectors. CO<sub>2</sub> emissions are shifting from Germany to other countries. In order to stop the barely perceptible process of de-industrialisation and carbon leakage, Germany should either join forces with Europe to achieve faster progress and more stringent targets in international climate protection or else curb its own pace. At the very least, Germany has to seek to make its Energiewende more efficient. Moreover, energy-intensive companies are going to require exemption regimes in the future, too. [more]
148
November 26, 2013
Region:
The EU Commission's stated aim of increasing the industrial sector's share of gross value added in the European Union to 20% by 2020 is extremely ambitious and, in our view, cannot be achieved in the foreseeable future. Nonetheless, it sends out the right political signal that Europe is to be strengthened as an industrial location. Rather than focusing on purely industry-specific measures, the attainment of this goal will ultimately require supportive conditions for companies – those from both the industrial and service sectors – to ensure that they can compete against non-European rivals. This in turn will necessitate investment in education, research and infrastructure as well as a benign investment climate, affordable energy prices and intelligent regulation. [more]
149
November 26, 2013
Region:
The expansion of renewables, while a worthy long-term goal, is presently jeopardising German competitiveness. To prevent this, the Energiewende – i.e. energy turnaround or transformation – must be implemented more efficiently. We welcome government plans to impose a minimum levy on new systems for captive generation. To ensure the levy doesn’t also rise unsustainably, the subsidies should gradually be phased into market-based price and volume mechanisms. The government should tighten exceptions to the levy, while continuing to shield the energy-intensive companies most vulnerable to international competition. [more]
150
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