In the last 30 years how do you see the industry has changed? How has your company adapted to these changes?
The shipbuilding industry is linked to the stable growth of the seaborne trade, which is based on the worldwide economic development and the globalisation of trade and production. A stable growth rate in seaborne trade means a constantly growing demand for new ships. This makes this industry sector attractive for many enterprises.
Characterised by cyclic developments in the medium term, the global shipbuilding market is a challenge for all participating players.
One of the main tasks of VDMA, the largest industrial association in Europe, is to support the member companies from all sectors of German marine equipment to succeed in this cyclic international market. The German marine equipment industry has kept its world leading position in spite of all market ups and downs as well as geographic shifts.
What major shifts have you seen in the last 30 years in terms of government policy which has either helped or hindered your business?
Shipbuilding is by tradition much affected by governmental interests, regulations as well as subsidies to support its development. 30 years ago, the opening up of Chinese economy as well as its shipbuilding industry resulted in a strong growth of business for the German marine equipment industry. Since leading German ship owners were pioneers in placing huge orders for newbuilding series at Chinese shipyards, it also sped up the number of leading German marine Equipment companies in China.
The last years have - unfortunately - shown some developments in the opposite direction. Some countries follow the policy of protectionism and building of trade barriers. We are convinced that such a policy will in the long term result in very negative effects on the international industry sector of shipping and shipbuilding
Has internet technology and in particular ecommerce and IOT (internet of things) affected your company?
VDMA deals intensively with all aspects of Digitalization, to support more than 3000 member companies in this important industry change process. The German machinery industry is one of the strongest drivers of the IOT development in the world. This revolutionary process is called "Industrie 4.0" in Germany. VDMA is one of the key players in this development.
How has your company had to evolve in terms of product offering in order to adjust to the changes in the industry?
VDMA is constantly developing new services for its member companies. The digital revolution leads to new business models in the machinery industry. VDMA is supporting this development and adjusting as well as strategically developing its own services especially in the digital sector.
Being an exhibitor for over 30 years now at Marintec China, how would you describe your relationship with this event?
Marintec China is the largest and most important maritime trade exhibition in Asia, our most important export region. From the beginnings of Marintec China, Germany is hosting the largest national pavilion overseas at this important show.
What do you get excited most about when returning to Marintec China at each edition?
We are extremely excited to see how the exhibition has grown, to see the development of the Asian shipbuilding industry and to see the development of the huge German presentation at this Exhibition.
How would you describe Marintec China to someone who has never visited?
If you deal with Chinese Shipbuilding market, this is THE must-see Event!
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VDMA was founded in November 1892 and is the most important voice for the mechanical engineering industry today. It represents the issues of the mechanical and plant engineering sector in Germany and Europe. It successfully accompanies its members in global markets. Its technical expertise, industry knowledge and straightforward positioning make it a recognized and valued point of contact for companies as well as the general public, science, administration and policy makers.
VDMA - Marine Equipment and Systems is a special division of this influential association, representing the entire maritime supply industry for shipbuilding as well as offshore industries.