Fri, 07 Aug 2020

BERLIN, July 6 (Xinhua) -- More than one in five German companies (27 percent) found their survival to be "at risk as a result of the coronavirus crisis," according to a company survey published by the ifo Institute on Monday.

"We could see a wave of insolvencies in the coming months" in Germany, warned ifo researcher Stefan Sauer.

In order to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus crisis, companies' duty to file for insolvency has been suspended until the end of September. Experts have repeatedly warned that the number of insolvency proceedings would increase once the suspension expired.

Although insolvency numbers in Germany were down 8.9 percent year-on-year in the first half of the year, German credit agency Creditreform stressed that the insolvency situation had "decoupled from the actual situation of companies."

Within the service sector, travel agencies and tour operators were most concerned about the future as 85 percent saw their survival threatened by the COVID-19 crisis, according to ifo. German legal firms and accounting companies, on the other hand, were confident about their ability to maintain their businesses.

Germany's manufacturing industry also showed a mixed picture. While around one in two companies in metal production and processing regarded COVID-19 as a threat to their existence, producers of pharmaceutical products were virtually unaffected, according to ifo.

Germany's Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Peter Altmaier, told the newspaper Bild on Sunday that he was confident that Germany could "stop the economic downturn after the summer break" and expects the German economy to "start growing again by October at the latest."

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