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Social & Economic Policy
The VDMA's economic policy positions are derived from the conviction that competition, individual responsibility and open markets form the basis for overall economic success. We call for a regulatory-based economic policy that creates a good, reliable framework for investment and innovation. In this way, we offer technological solutions, create secure employment and ensure that it will continue to be attractive to be an entrepreneur in Germany and Europe.

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  • VDMA calls for moratorium on burdens for SMEs
Increasing documentation requirements pose particular challenges for the German mechanical and plant engineering sector, which is dominated by small and medium-sized enterprises, in international competition, and these challenges have been exacerbated by the Corona pandemic. A moratorium on burdens is therefore the right response to cushion further burdens and emerge stronger from the Corona crisis.

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From our Articles
Economic policy positions of the mechanical and plant engineering industry 2021

Traditionally at the beginning of the year, the VDMA revises and updates its economic policy positions.

Combustion engine leads to a green future!

The planned Euro 7 emission standard must not reverse the success of the previous Euro standard. The combustion engine remains an important motor for the journey to green mobility, as a necessary part of a hydrogen economy. The planned obligation that new vehicles in Europe must be practically emission-free from 2025 onwards would be an ecological, economic and technological aberration.

VDMA: Due Diligance Regulation must be fundamentally revised

Not the protection of human rights, but an extensive catalogue of sanctions against companies are at the core of the planned Due Diligance Regulation. The VDMA is therefore calling on the Bundestag to thoroughly revise the government draft that the cabinet passed on Wednesday.

Ordo economic policy in times of Corona

On 9/7/2020, the Ordo-Economic Policy Sounding Board discussed current economic policy in times of Corona and subsequently sharpened VDMA's positioning.

Economic stimulus package must be sustainable

The machinery and plant engineering industry believes that the 130 billion euro package to stimulate the economy is fundamentally the right thing to do.

Direct investments ensure success of mechanical engineering

Foreign direct investment in Germany, just like German direct investment abroad, ensures the success of the German mechanical and plant engineering industry. The political goal must be to achieve the same investment conditions everywhere as in Europe.

More clarity for climate protection

With innovative technologies of the future, the German mechanical and plant engineering industry can make a significant contribution to meeting national and international climate targets. Against this backdrop, although the start of a new system has been successful, a number of opportunities have been missed.

VCI, VDMA and ZVEI: Joint position on debt brake

Ten years after its introduction, there are increasing calls in politics and industry for a "softening" of the debt brake and an end to the "black zero". VCI, VDMA and ZVEI jointly advocate adherence to the debt brake.

EU digital policy: from consumer protection to geostrategy

Platforms, AI, data or cybersecurity: in digital issues, the EU sets the rules. But the ambition is bigger: digitalisation should solve societal problems and strengthen the EU globally.

Use existing laws instead of new AI regulation

AI in industry does not need further regulation now, but a factual approach to the risks.

Horizon Europe: Mechanical engineering topics included

A launch event organised by the BMBF this week presented how the almost 100 billion euros of the new EU research programme will be distributed. There are also funding opportunities for mechanical engineering.

Skilled immigration welcome!

The mechanical and plant engineering industry is desperately looking for skilled workers. Immigration of qualified workers from third countries can also help here if the planned Skilled Workers Immigration Act is designed and implemented in a practical, transparent and unbureaucratic manner.

VDMA pleads for positive trade relations with the USA under Biden

Under Joe Biden, there is finally an opportunity to achieve a more positive trade relationship between the EU and the US. Now is an opportune moment to enter into talks with the Americans on concluding transatlantic trade agreements, for example on mutual recognition of conformity assessments.

Industrial policy

The VDMA is convinced that it is in favour of a market economy based on regulatory policy and rejects small-scale interventions and subsidies as a matter of principle. Beyond that, however, there are exceptional cases, which have to be justified in each case, which can justify a selective deviation from the basic line.

EU trade policy must focus on market opening

The EU Commission continues to focus on opening markets and free trade agreements. This creates reliable framework conditions for exports by the mechanical engineering industry. But the idea that EU trade policy can solve all contentious issues in international politics is wrong.

To the point

To the point

Auf den Punkt Zitat Social Policy

"Due Diligance Regulation needs to target areas where risks are particularly high. However, this does not include suppliers who deliver to German businesses from within the European Union or other democratic countries."

Thilo Brodtmann, VDMA Executive Director

Auf den Punkt Zahl Gesellschaftspolitik


billion euros

will need to be invested in machinery and plants for the powertrain in order to manufacture the approximately 1.4 million fuel cell cars expected across Europe in 2040.

Source: VDMA

Auf den Punkt Zusammenfassung Gesellschaftspolitik

Doubling non-tariff trade barriers would, according to a report by IfW Kiel:
  • lead to a decline in real income in Germany of up to 6.9 percent per year
  • cause a drop in production in the German mechanical engineering sector of up to 20 percent
  • result in more bureaucracy and national unilateral action in the event that civil liability is imposed in Germany in cases of misconduct by independent third parties abroad

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Other VDMA Services
VDMA Berlin Office
For VDMA, representing the political interests of its members is a core service. The capital office sees itself as a mediator not only for the interests of our members, but also for contacts between politics and companies.
The voice of mechanical engineering in Brussels
The European Office is a bridge between business and politics. We inform our member companies about relevant political developments. We are a competent contact for EU decision-makers.
The VDMA regional associations - your partner in the region
No matter how big your company is and what solution you offer: We are there for you! With individual consulting, practical events, a comprehensive network and good connections to politics.
The VDMA ShortPositions are published monthly and cover current political topics. We hereby intend to contribute to the exchange between politics and business.
EU Bubble Talks – 30 minutes insights from Brussels
Whether it's the Green Deal, industrial strategy or digitization initiatives - have you always wanted to know more about the activities of the EU Commission and EU Parliament and how they affect the mechanical engineering industry? Then participate in our regular web seminar which is held in English and immerse yourself in the "Brussels Bubble" with us.
Newsletter EU-Politics
Our monthly newsletter informs you about all social and economic policy issues that are discussed, decided on, and passed at the EU level.
Brief report by the IMPULS Foundation
As a complement to the classic studies of the IMPULS Foundation, the organization's brief reports provide a quick, initial assessment of current issues - without compromising on scientific standards and utility for readers.
Energy Efficiency Networks
Following the motto of energy-efficient networking, the VDMA supports the improvement of energy efficiency and therefore invites its members to participate in energy efficiency networks free of charge. This networking work focuses on a voluntary and unbureaucratic transfer of experience. It is conducted four times a year at the scheduled networking meetings.
Events on EU policy
VDMA regularly organizes and supports political events on EU policy. Follow the European policy debates and better understand what framework conditions are coming for mechanical engineering.


Markets & Economy Committee
Ausschuss Gesamtwirtschaftliche Fragen

The regular, practical assessment of the international economic situation of the mechanical engineering industry in the committee is an indispensable contribution to the VDMA's economic analysis, including short-term forecasts. In addition, the committee members support the VDMA's economic policy commitment by interpreting and discussing the content of economic developments and interrelationships in a political context.



Bodo Finger

Maschinenfabrik Mönninghoff


Wiechers, Ralph Dr.

Tax Committee
In the Tax Committee, mainly heads of the tax/finance departments from the member companies discuss pending legislative projects and shape the VDMA's tax policy work


Petra Klingenstein

Hitachi ABB Power Grids


Meißner, Ulrich

Markets & Economy Committee
Ausschuss Außenwirtschaft

The Foreign Trade Committee exchanges views on professional issues and tasks relating to exports. The members represent a cross-section of the mechanical engineering industry. They are part of the company's management or play a key role in exports. The Foreign Trade Committee mainly deals with market strategies for individual countries and regions as well as export issues such as trade policy and foreign trade policy.




Rainer Hundsdörfer

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG


Ackermann, Ulrich

Sustainability & Energy Committee
Ausschuss Klima- und Energiepolitik
The Committee's areas of responsibility are in particular: - issues relating to climate and energy policy in general - Questions concerning the political framework conditions for the fields of energy conversion and energy efficiency in particular In doing so, the committee takes both an outward (politics, ministries, BDI, public, etc.) and an inward (VDMA organization) perspective of the tasks.


Daniel Chatterjee

MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH


Zelinger, Matthias

Legal Committee
The VDMA Legal Committee is the traditional central body of the VDMA Legal Department, currently consisting of about 65 heads of legal departments of member companies. In the VDMA Legal Committee, legal topics relevant to mechanical engineering are discussed in a dedicated exchange, legal problems are identified and VDMA positions are co-drafted. The committee, which meets once a year, deals with ongoing topics (reform of the General Terms and Conditions) as well as current legal issues (digitalization, etc.) and offers members space for the important exchange of experience.


Jörg Kondring

Voith GmbH & Co. KGaA

Research, Innovation & Technology Committee
Forschung und Innovation
The focus is on innovation policy, engineering and skilled worker training, and technology trends. At the same time, this VDMA top committee acts as a link in politics and science.


Stefan Rinck

Singulus Technologies AG


Rauen, Hartmut

Sustainability & Energy Committee
VDMA-Ausschuss Umweltpolitik

The VDMA Environmental Policy Committee deals with environmental policy issues for the mechanical and plant engineering industry. These include, among others, the topics of recycling management, product-related environmental protection, operational environmental protection and sustainability. The committee deals with European and national as well as international topics. In addition to the transfer of knowledge and environmental policy news, it is also concerned with the preparation of statements. The committee meets twice a year and the number of seats is limited.


Stefanie Grubert

Bosch Rexroth AG


Brückner, Sarah Dr.

Legal Committee
Ausschuss Öffentliches Auftragswesen
The Public Procurement Committee deals with fundamental issues of national and European public procurement law as well as the contract terms and conditions of public contracting authorities. This involves, among other things, the preparation of statements or participation in the amendments to the contracting regulations VOB and VOL. The VDMA positions are submitted to the public procurement committees and the federal ministries in charge. The committee meets twice a year.


Markus Janse

OSMA - Aufzüge


Hess, Christian Dr. iur.

Education & Modern Working Committee
The VDMA Education Committee is the authoritative body for networking and exchange among VDMA member companies on education topics, as well as for monitoring and steering VDMA activities in this area.


Thomas Koch

Benteler Deutschland GmbH


Friedrich, Jörg Dr.

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Benefits for you as a member

Largest industry network in Europe

Around 3,300 primarily medium-sized member companies in the capital goods industry make the VDMA the largest industrial association in Europe and the most important network organization in the industry.

Strong representation of interests

The VDMA is the most important voice of the mechanical and plant engineering industry. It represents the common economic, technical and scientific interests of the industry in Germany and around the world.

A wide range of services

More than 500 VDMA employees worldwide support you with practical services to make the right decisions in your company - along the entire value chain.