As Germany’s electricity and natural gas prices soar, a wave of companies – some having a long tradition – are filing insolvency. Many midsize companies rely on natural gas as a source of energy, but prices have multiplied since early this year.
Blackout News here reports toilet paper maker Hakle has filed for insolvency, citing “increased energy costs”.
“Tenfold increase in gas and electricity prices”
Others include shoe retailer Görtz, who cite low sales as consumers cut back on their discretionary spending, and automobile supplier Dr. Schneider. Steel producer ArcelorMittal in Hamburg und Bremen are also following.
“With a tenfold increase in gas and electricity prices, which we had to accept within a few months, we are no longer competitive in a market that is 25% supplied by imports. We see an urgent need for political action to get energy prices under control immediately,” said Reiner Blaschek, CEO of ArcelorMittal Germany (Financial Market World).
Another industry sector facing extreme hardship is the bakery industry, which relies heavily of affordable energy. According to Blackout News: “For bakeries, the energy crisis is now worse than the Corona pandemic, according to industry sources. ‘We have the problem as a micro baker that we have to adjust our prices to the raw material and energy prices, of course, which also burdens the customer, if he is also a bit tighter on cash,’ says an affected baker from Heilbronn.”
One baker in our local area has seen his monthly gas bills go from 3000 euros earlier this year to 11,000 euros!
“Severe and long-lasting recession”
The wave of insolvencies has just begun, and is “picking up speed”, writes Blackout News. “What we are seeing now is just the tip of an iceberg. Increased energy prices are affecting all industries, whether directly, as in the case of steel mills and bakeries, or indirectly, as in the case of shoe retailer Görtz. If politicians do not take countermeasures here, Germany will fall into a severe and long-lasting recession, with mass unemployment and a massive loss of prosperity.”