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VDMA: Shortage of supplier parts expected to become more acute

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VDMA: Shortage of supplier parts expected to become more acute

According to Ulrich Reifenhäuser, Chairman of the Plastics and Rubber Machinery Association in the VDMA, German plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers achieved a turnover plus of 12% in 2021.

"It didn't turn out to be a record year, as the impetus from the automotive sector in 2018 and 2019 was too strong for that, but we are more than satisfied with the order intake in 2021 as a whole (up 39% against the previous year)," Ulrich Reifenhäuser said.

Currently, the order books of companies are still reasonably well filled, but due to supply chain problems resulting from lockdowns and the Ukraine war, it is becoming increasingly difficult for companies to convert orders into turnover. Added to this are the rapidly rising prices for raw materials and energy.


And finally, after the small interim peak in 2021, there is now a saturation effect in addition to a base effect. Both these factors mean that the new order volume is declining.

"In the first four months of the current year, new orders fell 17% short of those of the same period last year," brought up Thorsten Kühmann, managing director of the trade association, explaining the reason for the many worries among plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers.

"Availability of supplier parts is the predominant issue in the mechanical engineering sector, which, according to surveys, will become more acute again in the coming months before the sector can expect it to ease," Thorsten Kühmann continued.


The uncertainty in the world market as a result of the Ukraine war is doing the rest. For this reason, the trade association recently revised its turnover 2022 forecast of 5 to 10%, and now expects a sideways movement, or at best a small increase of no more than 2%.


VDMA Circular Economy Forum at K 2022


Alongside climate protection and digitalization, the circular economy is one of the key themes of K 2022. If the plastics cycle is to be successful, recyclable products are needed, as well as high-performance machines and systems that can turn plastic waste into good quality recyclates, and then process the recyclates into new, high-quality products.

At the VDMA Circular Economy Forum on the open-air site of K 2022, visitors to the fair can see how the circular economy works in practice in the plastics industry.

Throughout ten pavilions, the VDMA and its members – manufacturers of plastics machinery and equipment – together with their partners, will be showing the technologies they utilize to make the plastics cycle possible in the first place.

This involves the processing of plastic waste, as well as the production of re-granulate, which is then processed into new products. The digitalization of the procedures plays an important role here.

The VDMA Dome is at the center of the forum. It is once again the meeting place for everyone who wants to know more about the circular economy in the world of plastics. The installation named "The Machine" provides an overview of the individual process steps of the cycle.

Here, 40 companies will present their highlights on the circular economy in video clips, and where these can be found at the fair. The accompanying exhibition shows what is produced on the machines: plastic products made from recyclate.

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