- Large sections of small and medium-sized businesses are threatened with bankruptcy as a result of the Corona crisis, the Federal Association of Small and Medium-Sized Businesses warns.
- President Mario Ohoven demands: “We therefore have to prevent the takeover of companies that are weakened by the crisis by investors who are only interested in quick profits.”
- He is particularly suspicious of one country: China.
The Federal Association of Small and Medium-Sized Businesses warned of “bargain hunters” from China in the Corona crisis. President Mario Ohoven called for a temporary takeover moratorium on the European Union.
Ohoven told the German press agency: “As a result of the corona crisis, large parts of German small and medium-sized businesses are threatened with bankruptcy. We therefore have to prevent the takeover of companies that are weakened by the crisis by investors who are only interested in quick profits. ”
Europe should no longer act as a “toothless tiger”, warns Ohoven
The federal government must act immediately. “To protect medium-sized companies and their employees from being sold, particularly to Chinese bargain hunters, a temporary takeover moratorium on the European Union is urgently needed.”
Only a Europe-wide ban on takeovers of companies from the EU by Chinese companies could maintain the competitiveness, resilience and innovative ability of medium-sized companies.
As long as China does not accept competition on an equal footing with equal rights and obligations for everyone involved, Europe must not continue to act as a “toothless tiger”, said Ohoven. He is also President of the European Entrepreneurs Association CEA-PME.
The federal government had taken steps at the national level and tightened the foreign trade regulation. The cabinet decided to change it on Wednesday. According to this, companies that manufacture medicines and vaccines “Made in German” should be better protected against takeovers by investors from non-EU countries.
6 figures that show the extent of the corona crisis for the German economy
2. 36,605 KfW applications approved
The state development bank KfW claims to have received more than 38,000 corona applications. These are exclusively loan aids, mainly for medium and large companies. The bank approved at least 36,605 of them, the paper said. The volume distributed so far is 19.3 billion euros.
The government separately pledged guarantees totaling around 1.3 billion euros for large companies not specified. Six further applications worth around 1.5 billion euros are in progress, according to the government document.
3. 11.8 percent drop in goods exports
Goods exports slumped sharply in March, 11.8 percent compared to the previous month. The paper refers to figures from the Federal Statistical Office. Exports to euro countries such as Italy, France and Spain were particularly affected. Figures for the April lockdown month are not yet available, but are likely to be even worse.
5. 37 percent decline in loan agreements
Have the Germans become risk-averse? In any case, compared to the previous year, there was a sharp decline in new loan contracts for private customers, namely by up to 37 percent per week compared to the previous year, the paper said. The data come from the Federal Statistical Office.
6. 3,822 hotline calls to the Ministry in one week
Finally, a number for gourmets. At the beginning of the crisis, the Federal Ministry of Economics set up its own corona hotlines. And they were used quite a bit. At the peak, in the first week of lockdown (March 23-29), there were 3,822 calls. Means: The phone rang on average every three minutes.
Since then the calls have been steadily decreasing. Last week there were only 560.
And what did the callers want to know? The focus was on the modalities of the application, questions about KfW loans, in particular possibilities of extending the term and problems of small businesses with landlords or suppliers.