The Enlightenment of Industrial Transfer of German Machine Tool Industry
For a period of time, the German Sankei media have frequently reported and discussed the transfer of the German machine tool industry, because the high labor cost in Germany has weakened the international competitiveness of the machine tool industry. This is very similar to what happened to the developed coastal manufacturing areas in my country in recent years. Especially before and after the financial crisis, labor-intensive enterprises in my country's Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta and other manufacturing-concentrated areas have been caught in a dilemma due to rising labor costs. The low-cost advantage of 'Made in China' in the past has also been weakened. In Germany, machine tools are an industry oriented towards technology and innovation, rooted in Germany as a reliable basis for its industrialization. To this end, in 2008, the relevant German media conducted a questionnaire survey to German machine tool companies on whether the German machine tool industry needs to be transferred as a target. The survey results show that 65% of the respondents came from companies with less than 100 employees, and only 5% came from companies with more than 1,000 employees, which reflects the middle-class structure of the German machine tool industry. In terms of sales, the composition is similar: 41% of companies have a turnover of less than 5 million euros, and only 16% have a turnover of more than 100 million euros. At the same time, the survey on the main customers of the German machine tool industry shows that the largest customer is the general machinery manufacturing industry, followed by the automobile and its spare parts suppliers, followed by the tool and die industry, the medical industry and the aerospace industry. In addition, 78% of the respondents have export business, indicating that the market for the German machinery industry is still mainly abroad. From this point of view, the industrial structure of German machine tools is very different from that of my country. In my country, key machine tool enterprises occupy a dominant position, while small and medium-sized enterprises and private enterprises have a large number of enterprises, but the contribution rate of output value is small. However, as with my country's machine tool industry, in recent years, the development trend of the German machine tool market has been improving, and 93% of enterprises have benefited from the recent economic growth. Nearly two-thirds of companies have recruited new employees in the past year, and more than one-quarter of companies have added more than 5%. This proves that there is a continuous increase in demand and an optimistic outlook locally in Germany. So is it necessary to transfer the German machine tool manufacturing industry? Among the current challenges facing the German machine tool industry, very few take industrial transfer as a challenge. On the contrary, companies believe that the important factor in maintaining competitiveness is not transfer, but the development trend of manufacturing technology. From the perspective of German companies, in order to maintain or improve competitiveness, the importance of future development directions should be graded. The most important level is undoubtedly the training of the labor force, followed by the service quality of the processing equipment and tool manufacturers and the advanced nature of the tools. It is also reflected from the importance classification that for a high-wage country, technology is in an unimportant position, and labor is only ranked in a secondary position. From this, two conclusions can be drawn: firstly, in countries where professional human resources are scarce, wages have lost their meaning; secondly, wages depend more on the level of production efficiency. In this survey, only 14% of respondents (none of them small businesses) see the need to move machinery manufacturing to low-wage countries, and less than a third of them are planning to do so. Although some companies have transferred the added value transferred in the past back to Germany, the reasons for the transfer include quality and communication problems, lack of flexibility and adaptability, lack of professional talents, and the resulting loss of technical project feasibility. However, 70% of the respondents still claimed that their companies did not intend to transfer the transferred manufacturing sector back to Germany. In the minds of machine tool companies that remain in Germany, what advantages does Germany have to form future competitiveness? Some of the most recognized areas include: well-educated professionals; high flexibility to meet the changing needs of customers in the manufacturing field; quality participation; good infrastructure; new machine tools; High awareness of organization and integrity and thus short delivery times, etc. Although the industrial structure of my country's manufacturing industry is different from that of Germany, in the wave of industrial restructuring of my country's manufacturing industry, many companies have chosen to transfer. Can a company adopt a guerrilla strategy for its long-term development? Where there are favorable policies and where labor costs are low, it is advisable to move to it? In fact, the root cause of industrial transfer should not be the cost issue. When Chinese manufacturing companies consider industrial transfer, perhaps they should also conduct a survey similar to that conducted by the German media.