More optimism in German high-tech industry

The high-tech industry in Germany is looking forward to a brighter future. Accordingly the German Association for Information Management, Telecommunications and New Media (BITKOM) modified their recent forecast. Now BITKOM expect turnover to grow by 1.8% this year which would correspond to total turnover reaching 145.5 billion Euros in the German market for information technology, telecommunications and digital consumer electronics. The major driving forces are still the software and IT services segments. For the year 2009 BITKOM expect the German market to grow by 1.5%.

According to experts, the most important factor for the market´s growth this year is information technology which generated 4.2% more turnover and grew to 66.6 billion Euros. Also growing is the business of software manufacturers increasing sales by 5.3% to 14.6 billion Euros and IT service providers with a plus of 6.3% to 32.7 billion Euros. These benefit from increased investment by businesses and public authorities in modern IT systems.

New software platforms, upgrades of existing applications or outsourcing projects will mark the business in the software field. For 2009 BITKOM expect the IT market to grow by 3.7%.

In the field of telecommunications turnover will presumably fall by 1.2% to 66.5 billion Euros in 2008. The situation in telecommunication is marked by rapid technological change and fierce price competition. Approximately 4.3 million households in Germany have in the meantime given up their landline phones and use mobile phones only. Netherless, the combined number of calls made over the landline and radio telephone networks grew by almost 12% over the past three years.

Better than expected was the development in the number of people using mobile phones. According to BITKOM estimates, by the end of 2008 there will be 110 million mobile phone cards in Germany which is an increase by 13%.Also booming are data services the turnover of which is predicted to grow by 5.5% this year and even more in 2009.

Also better going than expected is the business with digital consumer electronics. Turnover is said to increase by 5.4% to 12.4 billion Euros by the end of 2008. Back in spring BITKOM still expected just +2.4%. For flat screens the prediction is a plus by 30% to 5.7 million pieces sold which would be a new record. Sales of game consoles and navigation systems are said to reach record figures as well. GERMAN