German online weekly FOCUS writes Germany is turning into “Europe’s economic sick man” – due in large part to high energy prices and fierce environmental radicalism.
The German weekly reports how German industrial production has been falling, citing figures from the automotive, chemicals and pharmaceutical industries, all of which need large quantities of energy.
German industrial production in freefall
German economic output, now bordering on a recession, has been slowing down markedly since early 2018 and is now lagging behind the Eurozone average.
FOCUS cites a chart provided by Global Insight, Commerzbank-Research, which shows the 3-month moving average for industrial production, with 2015 equaling 100:
While the Eurozone industrial production has been holding steady since 2015, Germany has been falling since the end of 2017. Source: Global Insight, Commerzbank-Research.
The same trend is observed for the automotive industry. Car production by German automakers has been cut back domestically while the rest of Europe has seen greater car production by German automakers. Germany is no longer a production friendly location to do business.
High energy prices, hostile environmentalism taking a toll
FOCUS reports that the quality of Germany as a industry-friendly location “is deteriorating” and that the country has been “moving environmentally burdensome production” beyond its borders and notes how “German companies pay the highest electricity prices in Europe by a wide margin.”
“That particularly burdens the chemical industry,” FOCUS writes.
Under attack by radical environmentalism
Recently Germany has come under massive fire from a concerted campaign by environmental groups for not taking the fight against climate change seriously enough and moving too slowly in converting its energy supply to one that is green.
The Fridays for Future and Extinction Rebellion protests have been widespread in Germany and spooked politicians.
Sights on combustion engines and conventional power plants
Now the pressure is mounting to ban internal combustion engines altogether and to shut down the remaining nuclear power plants and to exit coal fired power. Analysts warn, however, that such power plant shutdowns will only make German electricity even more expensive, and make the country even less attractive as a place to do business.
German farmers block streets nationwide
Environmentalists and government regulators have also targeted agriculture in Germany. Today, farmers shut down streets in a nationwide protest and “are calling on Federal Ministers Klöckner and Schulze to discuss current agricultural and climate plans with them so they can have their say.”
Already Europe is in turmoil as at times violent protests rage in Spain, France, Netherlands and Belgium. In addition, Britain is pressing ahead with its exit out of the European Union while millions of refugees threaten to make their way to Europe from the war-ravaged Middle East, Turkey and North Africa. Refugee camps in Italy and Greece are horrendously overfilled.
The last thing Europe needs now are more insane, industry-destroying, jobs-killing policies. Hard economic times, energy poverty and millions of refugees would lead to a highly explosive situation in Europe.
It’s time for Europe’s leaders to finally sober the hell up and admit their policies are naive pipe dreams.